It is in this context that faithful Jews from every part of the empire had streamed into Jerusalem for this very important festival. And it is in this same context that the Holy Spirit was poured out upon the disciples – fire and wind and language.
They understood that the giving of the Spirit was now not just for Jews who believed in Jesus’ messiahship, but for all people; God’s covenant was enlarged, expanded, extended to include all people everywhere – regardless of nationality, race, age, ethnicity, gender….
We need the full power of God to stand up to evil in the world. We also need the power of the Holy Spirit to carry out our mission as God’s People and Jesus’ followers in the world; we can’t do it on our own strength and in our own wisdom.
If we try to do that we will, at the worst, cut ourselves off from the source of our life and strength; and, at the best, we will put God and ourselves in a box of our own making, limitations created by fear and aversion to risk.”
~ from sermon June 8, 2014 by Victoria Geer McGrath