The Holy Spirit Comes
Key Verse: “They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
THE BEGETTING POWER of the Holy Spirit in the members of the Early Church was indicated by certain miraculous gifts. This was allowed for the purpose of specially indicating that this was no less than the work of God through his resurrected son Jesus. The giving of the Holy Spirit had been promised by our Lord Jesus to his disciples. “I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive.”—John 14:16,17
When the Holy Spirit came to them as they were gathered together on the “day of Pentecost” (Acts 2:1), there was a “sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting.” (vs. 2) Our Key Verse says that those gathered in the upper room were “filled with the Holy Spirit.”
The choice of the sound of a mighty wind as a symbol of the power and influence of the Holy Spirit was for the purpose of drawing the attention of the Apostles. It was indeed an appropriate symbol. The word “spirit” is translated from the Greek word pneuma, which means breath or wind. This does not mean that the Holy Spirit is merely breath or wind, but like breath or wind, it is emblematic of God’s great invisible power.
Our Key Verse also says that when the Holy Spirit came upon those gathered there, the eleven chosen apostles “began to speak with other tongues.” This gift, given to the apostles, served as a witness to all of the Jews gathered there at Jerusalem from all nations of the world. The miracle was in the fact that the speaking of the apostles allowed those of all tongues to hear their words in their own native language.—vss. 5-8
At this beginning period of the Gospel Age, miracles were employed which demonstrated the glory of God. Jesus had healed the sick and raised the dead. The apostles did the same, as symbolic of the great work of Christ’s coming kingdom. After the apostles fell asleep in death, these miraculous gifts ended, their purpose having been accomplished. Consequently, the Lord’s people have been called upon to “walk by faith” (II Cor. 5:7), and to be witnesses for Jesus. Those so doing have proclaimed the “gospel of Christ,” which, as Paul asserts, is “the power of God unto salvation.”—Rom. 1:16
The begetting of the Holy Spirit in the case of an individual Christian is for the purpose of helping with the transformation of their character from the fallen human nature to that of a “new creature,” the new mind or will. “Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 2:5) We are told in II Corinthians 8:12 to be of “a willing mind.”
Another important benefit provided by the begetting of the Holy Spirit is given to us in these words: “Blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear.” (Matt. 13:16) This shows us that we have the opportunity to understand things that are only meant for the Heavenly Father’s called ones—true disciples of his son. “God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.” (I Cor. 2:10) We understand these “deep things” which have been taught us by our Lord Jesus and the apostles through the promised comforter, the Holy Spirit.