He told them, “This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and repentance for the forgiveness of sins will be preached in his name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
The Pentecost day outpouring of the Holy Spirit did not come to the disciples so that they could have a nice party, see a cool display, or to speak in other languages. Ultimately, it was for this purpose, that repentance and forgiveness of sins might be preached in the name of the Messiah to all nations, beginning where they were.
Whereas Pentecost begins in a small upper room, it ends in all the nations. It reminds us of another significant prophetic word from the Lord Jesus.
And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.
Can you feel your pulse quicken a little bit as you read those words? Does your heart jump with excitement for sharing the love of Jesus with those around you? The disciples might have run out the door right then if Jesus had not entered the quote with a very particular command.
Has the Lord given you a desire to see the lost saved? When you have seen the crowds, have you “had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd”? (Matthew 9:36) can you identify with these words from the prophet Jeremiah?
But if I say, “I will not mention his word
or speak anymore in his name,”
his word is in my heart like a fire,
a fire shut up in my bones.
I am weary of holding it in;
indeed, I cannot.
The disciples were not able to hold it in.
Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off —for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
The command was to stay. I almost prefer the King James Version, which is to tarry. It’s not a word we use much in every day conversation, but it means specifically to wait upon someone or some thing. Synonyms include delay and linger. When is the last time you lingered in the presence of the Lord?
Let’s spend some time lingering in his presence today as we anticipate a greater measure of his anointing to preach the gospel.
Lord, we ask you today to fill us with compassion for the lost. Give us zeal for the harvest and zeal for the lamb to receive the reward of his suffering. Fill us with readiness, power, and boldness to share your truth whenever the opportunity arises. May we be transformed by your Pentecostal Holy Spirit infilling.