« AnteriorContinuar »
Descent of the Holy Ghost on the day of Pentecost
-the gift of tongues—the effect produced on the multitude-Peter's address to them the happy state of the church.
FROM ACTS II.
AND when the day of Pentecost* was fully come, they were altogether in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. And there appeared tongues like as of fire distributed, [among them] and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with different tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.
And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jewe, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. And they were all amazed and wondered, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these that speak Galileans? and how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born? Parthians, and Medes, and Elamites, and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, and of Judea, and Cappadocia, of Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, and Pamphylia, of Egypt, and of the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, Jews and proselytes, Cretes and Arabians, we do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful
* Pentecost.—The fiftieth day, i. e. after the passover, a feast kept in commemoration of the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai ; which event took place tifty days after the Israelites left Egypt, when the feast of the passover was instituted.
works of God. And they were all astonished, and were perplexed, saying one to another, What meaneth this? Others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.
But Peter, standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and said unto them, Ye men of Judea, and all ye that dwell at Jerusalem, be this known unto you, and hearken to my words : for these are not drunk as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day.* But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; And it shall come to pass in the last days, (saith God,) I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: and on my servants, and on my handmaidens, I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy: and I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath ; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke: the sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before that great and notable day of the Lord come: and it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Ye men of Israel hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles, and wonders, and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: Him, being delivered by the determinate council and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by the hands of wicked men, have crucified and slain; whom God hath raised up, having loosed the bands of death : because it was not possible that he should be held by it. For David
* Third hour. Nine o'clock forenson. The Jews began to reckon the hours of their day from sun-rise, or six o'clock.
speaketh concerning him, I have set the Lord always before my face ; for he is at my right hand, that I should not be moved: for this, my heart was glad, and my tongue exulted; moreover my flesh shall rest in hope: because thou wilt not leave my soul among the dead, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption. Thou hast made known to me the ways of life; thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.
Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you of the patriarch David, that he both died and was buried, and his sepulchre is with us until this day: therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that, of the fruit of his loins, one should sit on his throne: he seeing this before, spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah,* that his soul was not left among the dead, neither his flesh did see corruption. This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses. Therefore being by the right hand of God exalted, and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath poured forth this, which ye now see and hear. For David ascended not into the heavens : but he himself saith, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made to be both Lord and Messiah, that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified. Now when they heard this, they were stung in their heart, and said unto Peter, and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do? Then Peter
* Messiah., Messiah is a Hebrew word, signifying anointed: Christ is the Greek word signifying the same thing. The word Messiah has been here preferred, because the title Christ has bgcome by use more a proper name, than a title bearing any signitication.
said unto them, Repent,* and be baptized every one of
you into the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, whomsoever the Lord our God shall call. And with many other words did he testify and exhort, saying, Save yourselves from tliis perverse generation.
Then they that gladly received his word were baptized : and there were added in that day about three thousand souls. And they continued steadfastly in the teaching of the apostles, and in the fellowship, and in the breaking of bread, and in
And fear came upon every soul : and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles. And all that believed were together, and had all things common; and sold their posses
* Repent.— The Greek word here rendered repent, as well as the kindred word rendered 'repentance,' is in this, and several other passages, translated in the Vulgate Latin by 'penitentia ;' and in the Rheims version by the English word (derived from that) 'penance,' which is contracted from 'penitence.
We shall render the Greek words in question by the English words' repentance' or 'penitence,' and 'repent. For Roman Catholics, including under the words repentance or penitence, not only internal sorrow for sin, with purpose of future amendment; but also a disposition on the part of the penitent, to manifest his inward sorrow for sin by penitential works, do in fact include in the word ' repent, all that they mean by the phrase do penance;' whereas, although the word penance, according to Roman Catholic doctrine, essentially implies internal sorrow for sin, it conveys to Protestants only the idea of certain austerities, or voluntary sufferings, or at least certain exercises peculiar to the Church of Rome. It is obvious, therefore, that while Roman Catholics are in no danger of being misled by the use of the words " repentance or • penitence, Protestants would be in danger of being misled by the use of the words penance and do penance.
sions and goods, and divided them to all, as every man had need. And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, received food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church those who were saved daily.*
Words, &c. TO BE EXPLAINED IN LESSON II. Pentecost, Corruption,
Ascended, Determinate, Patriarch,
QUESTIONS ON LESSON II.
What event took place on the day of Pentecost ?
What gift was bestowed on the apostles ?
What effect did this produce on the multitude, and what did they say?
What did Peter urge them to do ?
* Who were saved.—Literally
persons being saved,” i.e. persons placed in the way of final salvation, by embracing Christianity.