In April, Lou Engle and scores of other leaders merged together in the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum for TheCall Azusa Now to celebrate the historic 110th anniversary of the Azusa Street Revival of Los Angeles.
Though I was unable to attend live due to recovery from my surgery, my full attention was riveted on my television set as I watched at least 13 hours of the event from my home in Franklin, Tennessee. More than simply a nominal observer, I wept for at least six hours while agreeing in prayer as many of my friends participated on the platform.
I knew in my spirit that this was a pivotal event in the life of this nation and the body of Christ at large. It was a convergence of two great streams coming together to form one great river of God's global presence. The modern-day "prayer and prophetic" graces were being merged with the "power and evangelism" gifting, creating a culture where true prophetic evangelism and a host of apostolic evangelists would be thrust upon the scene of modern Christianity. In my 40-plus years of full-time ministry, this was a historic gathering.
An Old World Made New
Since then, a word has been resurrected within my heart that the Holy Spirit shared with me over 20 years ago. I was at my home in Lee's Summit, Missouri, when the Holy Spirit shared an insight with me that I have never been able to shake. Gently, but powerfully He said, "I will restore Pentecost!" Those words have resounded within my being ever since. But if there is going to be a restoration of Pentecost, then we must understand the context and meaning behind this statement.
There are initially three main applications that come to mind in response to this word:
1. The Day When the Gift of the Holy Spirit was Poured Out as Recorded in Acts 2
2. The Jewish Feast of Pentecost
3. The Outpouring of the Holy Spirit at the Turn of the 20th Century referred to in Church History as Pentecostalism
But what did the Holy Spirit mean by this statement given to me those years ago? Let's dissect this phrase by phrase for a moment. I will—Who will do this thing? It is the jealousy of God. He Himself will do this great work. I will do what? Restore! The word restore means to return to its original condition; as refinishing an antique piece of furniture. Now let's take some time to develop what it is that will be restored.
The 3 Major Feasts
According to Deuteronomy 16:16 the tribes of Israel were to appear before the Lord on three major occasions each year. "Three times a year all your males shall appear before the Lord your God in the place which He chooses, at the Feast of Unleavened Bread and at the Feast of Weeks and at the Feast of Booths, and they shall not appear before the Lord empty-handed." Three major feasts are named here. But just as the three primary colors are broken down into seven major colors, so it is with the feasts. Leviticus 23:4-44 gives us a much more detailed view of these celebrations.
Passover is celebrated in the first month and is divided into three separate events: Passover (Lev. 23:4-5), Unleavened Bread (Lev. 23:6-8), and Sheaf of First Fruits (Lev. 23:9-14). Pentecost or Weeks is held in the third month of the Hebrew year as described in Leviticus 23:9-14. Tabernacles or Booths is commemorated in the seventh month and is also broken down into three distinct events: Trumpets (Lev. 23:23-25), Day of Atonement (Lev. 23:26-32) and Tabernacles (Lev. 23:33-44).
The Feast of Passover
Let's look at what occurred at the institution of the Old Testament Feast of Passover and then compare it to its New Testament fulfillment in the Lord's Supper:
Passover Supper—Old Covenant Feast: 1. Passover Lamb; 2. Flesh and unleavened bread; 3. Bitter herbs; 4. Blood of the Lamb; 5. Until the cross; 6. Until He comes (first coming); 7. Memorial service; 8. Deliverance and redemption from Pharaoh and Egypt and the house of bondage.
Lords Supper: New Covenant Feast—1. Lamb of God; 2. Bread of His flesh; 3. Sufferings of Calvary; 4. Blood of Christ; 5. After the cross; 6. Until He comes (second coming); 7. "In remembrance of Christ," 8. Deliverance and redemption from Satan and the world and the kingdom of darkness.
The Feast of Pentecost
Having compared the shadow of the Old Testament Passover to the fulfillment in the New Covenant through the work of the cross of Jesus Christ, let's now press on to consider a similar comparison/contrast of the Feast of Pentecost with its New Testament fulfillment:
New Testament Pentecost: 50th day after Passover—1. Writing the law of love on tablets of hearts and minds by the spirit of God; 2. 3,000 lived; 3. Ministration of life by the Spirit; 4. Glory revealed on the face of Jesus; 5. Unveiled face so we can be changed into the same glory; 6. Glory that remains; 7. Ministers of New Covenant; 8. Mount Zion; 9. Birth of Christianity.
At this original Day of the Giving of the Law (or Pentecost), there were many supernatural manifestations. The presence of God was known with tangible evidence. There proceeded a blaring sound of a trumpet, thunder, lightning, thick clouds, fire and the voice of the Lord. This resulted in great trembling, fear and quaking by Moses and the Israelites. When God drew near that awesome day, the whole place was shaken!
If this is what transpired under the Old Covenant giving of the law, then what is the description of its New Testament counterpart?
Let's take a peek at Acts 2:1-4 and 2:12-16:
"And when the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent, rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the spirit was giving them utterance. ... And they continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, 'What does this mean?' But others were mocking and saying, 'They are full of sweet wine.' But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them: 'Men of Judea, and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give heed to my words, for these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day; but this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel.'"
On the day that the Feast of Pentecost had its fulfillment, there likewise was a whole lot of shaking going on! The Holy Spirit came as a mighty, rushing wind and filled the place with the Father's presence. Tongues of fire appeared on each one's head as they absorbed His presence. Gifts of the Holy Spirit were freely distributed with powerful manifestations. Those in observance declared that they looked like a bunch of drunks as the disciples celebrated the coming of the Holy Spirit. So I ask myself, "Should we expect anything less today?"
As their noise grew, a crowd gathered from all across Jerusalem. Thousands came. Then Peter declared a simple, but penetrating message of the gospel, which resulted in fear, wonder, shaking and conviction. Those gathered cried out, "What must we do?" Peter boldly exclaimed, "Repent" and 3,000 souls found Jesus as their Messiah that day. Once again, I ask the simple question, "Should we expect anything less today?"
The Restoration of Pentecost
Remember, when you restore something, through a process, you return it to its original condition. Could that be part of what is happening in our day? "I will restore Pentecost" is the word I heard some years ago. I believe we are in process of the restoration of Pentecost.
When you refinish an antique piece of furniture, you have to begin by removing the outer layers first. Then after much labor and patience, you work your way back to the original wood or article. So it is with the restoration of the church. Much has been restored to the church through the past moves of the Holy Spirit. But today, we are in the midst of another great sweeping work restoring the church to the Spirit's presence, power, gifts and ministries.
At the day of Pentecost as recorded in Acts 2, we find that there were many supernatural manifestations. The wind came first. Then came the fire. This was followed by the filling of the Holy Spirit and the release of giftedness with the outward manifestation of power and conviction. In this current worldwide move of the Holy Spirit, we have seen the new wine freely flowing. The fire of God has been falling freshly today in San Diego, California; West Virginia; Seattle, Washington; and now it is time for it to spread. It's time for the wind to blow empowered believers forth to carry the Good News to the four corners of the Earth!
The fire of God's love, the zeal of the Lord and the burden for the lost will once again consume us. The wind of God will blow us outside of the supposed four walls of the church to usher in a new era of prophetic and apostolic evangelism. Yes, it is Harvest Time once again! That is ultimately what "Pentecost" is all about! It's time for the church to fulfill the Great Commission. "Go therefore into all the world." There is no word called sitting in the Great Commission of Jesus! It is GO!
As we approach the Jewish Feast of Pentecost on Sunday, June 12, let's believe for more of the grace and power of the Holy Spirit to be poured out. The new wine is flowing. The fire is coming. The wind will blow through Papa's House once again. It is time for another Pentecost!
For the original article, visit encountersnetwork.com.
Dr. James W. Goll is the founder of God Encounters Ministries, an award-winning author and communications trainer and has ministered in over 50 nations. For information on his webinars and online classes, visit godencounters.com. James continues to live in Tennessee and is a joyful father and grandfather today.
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