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Albert Bricker
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Acts of the Apostles Chapter Two

Sep 12, 2018

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Verse 1. The day of Pentecost has arrived and it has been ten days since the ascension of Jesus. It has been fifty days since the Sabbath of Passover. Pentecost in the Greek means fifty, fiftieth part of things, fiftieth in order. All the Jews would make there way to the temple for the early morning prayer and worship time at nine in the morning. The question arises as to who were all together in one place? Most point to the 120 being there in a room together. But let examine the evidences that is before us in scripture and history.

A... The 120 was made up of men and women. Since they were in the Jewish temple they would have been obeying the rules of the temple. The temple was divided into three areas for worship the Jewish men, the Jewish women, and the gentiles. So we can eliminate the women and gentiles being in this area.

B... That would leave us with just the twelve apostles, Jesus' brothers, Lazarus, Barsabass, Luke, the two men on the road to Emmaus, and the other men of how many we don't know. We can eliminate Luke as he was a gentile who had become a disciple. 

 

C... The evidence narrows this list down even more. Look ahead at verse seven we are told that all who were speaking where Galileans and scripture tells us in John 12:21 talks about Philip, John 21:2 indicates Peter, Thomas, Nathanael were all Galilean. There we have four of the twelve apostles being reveal to us. But the evidence takes us even further as we look at the verses in Acts.

 

D... This was a letter written and was not divided into chapters as we see it in our bibles. We go back to chapter 1:3 "to the apostles whom He had chosen" and he gave them a message that is recorded in verse five "But you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit" If he is speaking to the apostles then it eliminates all the other men. We know that he spoke only to the twelve by considering the antecedent of any pronoun is generally found by referring back to the nearest noun with which it agrees of people, places, numbers, gender and gives us the proof that the twelve are the ones who were together.

Verse 2. There is a very precise description in verse two that indicates this is more then the wind blowing. But this is no ordinary event because the wind blows from different directions horizontally. But at this event this thing comes down vertically and suddenly. If you want to get someones attention you make a grand entrance. This is not the wind it just says "A noise like" which came in and filled the house. The sound of the Holy Spirit filled the house and it was also heard by everyone outside. 

Verse 3. Having the appearance of tongues they dispersed them self to each apostle. The appearance can only be described as of fire, not actual fire.

Verse 4. What does it mean to be filled with the Holy Spirit? The best description and definition I could explain this phrase is by using another phrase. "We have eaten our fill" it is the amount of something that is need or one can bear, or wants to bear. Merriam - Webster dictionary has a good meaning of being filled "fills all requirements". The apostles were given what they needed to get the job done, and that was certain gifts provide by the Holy Spirit. 

"And began to speak with other tongues"; these twelve men from Galilee who most likely spoke in Aramaic and having a dialect different from others were now speaking in other languages. What they spoke was by the aid of the Holy Spirit this message was not their own. 

Verse 5: "Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem". These Jews as we'll find out later were from different areas and spoke different languages. What seems to be the case is that they had traveled to Jerusalem for the Passover and might have rented rooms, stayed with family, or had homes in both places and they had stayed for the celebration of Pentecost. That may be the reason Luke goes ahead and writes they were "devote men".

Verse 6: We now have a new sound that brings the crowd together in bewilderment. The Greek word for sound in verse two is different here in verse six. Since the words are different then it stands to reason the sounds are different. The multitude of people come to hear and see these twelve men speaking in their own language. So the sound is the twelve men speaking in tongues which included dialect. They were bewildered because as verse seven indicates to us they were Galileans, yet they are speaking several of the languages from different regions.

Verse 7: Amazed and marveled gives us the indication that they were talking among themselves trying to figure out the meanings and happenings of these events. They even go so far as to question each other about these twelve's heritage.

Verse 8: The Holy Spirit came upon the twelve and caused them to speak in other languages. Those who say the apostles spoke Galilean, and those who heard actually heard in their own language. They miss the miracles of the event of the Holy Spirit enabling the apostles to speak these languages. It was this along with Peters message that caused 3000 to believe and be added to the church. 

Verses 9-10: The languages spoke was Persian, Greek, Aramaic, Arabic, Syriac, Chaldee, Demotic, Latin. Even though we have Twelve apostles, there was not twelve different languages. It's most likely the apostles were preaching and the people went were they heard their own language being spoken.

Verse 11: "We hear them in our own tongues speaking the mighty deeds of God". Before Peter preaches his sermon there is a sermon about the mighty deeds of God. Perhaps a reminder of Creation and the History of Israel under Gods mighty hand.

Verse 12: Remember these are devote men and they are amazed at this event. The event is so out of the ordinary that they knew God was doing a miracle.

Verse 13: Then there were others who were mocking and saying these men are drunk. It amazes me how you can be talking in their language and dialect and presume your drunk. But people miss out on God every day because they only see the physical. A thirty five acre area filled with worshipers and only 3000 were added to the church. We think that is a large number but in contrast it was only a small percentage. 

Verse 14: As we look at the beginning of this verse we can understand that only the 12 received the Holy Spirit gift of speaking in tongues. Had all the men or the one hundred and twenty received these gifts also they would have been mention here with Peter. We have Peter's sermon recorded for us even though the others were preaching also. The reason we have this sermon only is this is the one that the Holy Spirit inspired Luke to write. Remember Luke; is a gentile and would not been in this area and thus never heard this message. "Men of Judea" are the men living in the land and those "living in Jerusalem" are those who had come to visit.

Verse 15: What you see and hear is not because men are drunk at 9 A.M. There is a reason for these events and Peter is about to give an account that has gone unrecognized by this group of men.

Verse 16: The Old Testament prophets talked about events that would happen in conjunction with the Messiah and the last days. Here Peter takes them to Joel (Joel 2: 28-32) to emphasize the fulfillment of a prophecy.

Verse 17: The last  days or the end times according to the prophet would be a time when the Messiah established his kingdom and revealed judgment. We understand this to be the Christian age and the establishment of his kingdom in the form of the church. This is not your local congregation, but refers to the body of believers who are faithful and fruitful in Gods will.

God has poured out his spirit on the twelve in a unique way. But as verse thirty eight will indicate God is going to give his Spirit to those who have been baptized. In this new covenant all of mankind who has accepted these terms will be able to share the message. It just won't be the priest, prophets, and Rabbi, everyone will have visions that are in line with Gods word and are promptings from the Holy Spirit. While dreams will come from God to show things that will surely come to pass.

Verse 18: In "those days" indicates the Christian age it will not be limited to Pentecost. The gospel message will be shared throughout future generations accompanied by many signs and wonders.

Verse 19: The close of the end times there will be cosmological changes that will indicate the second coming of Christ. During these event blood, fire, and vapor of smoke will be upon the land. Such languages configures with other scriptures of the end time and the last day.  

Verse 20: Here He continues to explain what will take place as these events begin to unfold. Revelation 6:12 (Go to Revelation PT1 on this web page and read chapter 6.

Verse 21: Peter is still quoting Joel as he begins to share that there is hope by "calling on the name of the Lord". But you have to do it during this appointed time (end times). Calling on the name of the Lord indicates in whom we must seek out, and in verse 22 he will be revealed. This is how your going to be saved in the end times which doesn't mean just crying out his name and saying you believe. It means I'm making a plea to Jesus and I want to know his instructions for salvation. That's why in verse 37 these men ask "What shall we do?" What are going to be the instructions for being saved and we find them in verse 38. We done see that they believe, they where pricked to the heart so they where repented, They heard the message and they were confessing there faith in Jesus. Peter said; be baptized for the remission of sins and to receive the Holy Spirit.

Verse 22: Peter begins to explain to them the plan that God has for mankind. Jesus who came from Nazareth was approved by God by many miracles, signs, and wonders. Such things established that the message was in fact from God, that the message was true. Many of these men had witness Jesus' ministry and they knew that God had been the mighty hand behind the miracles of Jesus.

Verse 23: However, Jesus had been "delivered up" by wicked men even though he spoke the truth. The Jews had Jesus arrested and put him on a fake trial. Then they handed him over to Pilate, Herod, and the Roman Soldiers. As such He was nailed to the cross and salvation is now available to all mankind.

Verse 24: In the previous fifty two days Jesus had been arrested, crucified, resurrected, spent 40 days among the disciples and seen by over 500, then ascended into heaven. Jesus had been in many areas of Israel and they were well aware of him and his claims. This is something you just don't keep quiet and most likely the news had spread to many areas. The death of Jesus and his resurrection set us free from the penalty of sin. Sin had bound use under the curse of death with out hope of eternal life until the Messiah came. As such we were bound by a code (the law) which revealed to use what was sin and what was righteous. We were under a religion, and not a relationship. Grace changed the dynamics of our relationship with God from that code to adoption into his family. That's why people longed for the Messiah thinking they would be liberated from the oppression of other countries. What they failed to understand was their liberation from sin into a spiritual kingdom. Those who had faith in the Old Testament times only had the hope that the Messiah would come in their life time. They have been forgiven through Christ because of their faith and having their sins rolled forward. On this side of the cross a New Covenant (Testament) is for the faithful that we have the assurance of eternal life and that death is no longer are master.

Verse 25: Peter affirms his message by quoting David in Psalm16. 

Verse 26: Even though David wrote these words in Psalm 16 Peter uses these words to show the Messiah (Jesus) was in the grave (Hades).

Verse 27: Even though Christ was in the grave his body saw no decay because he had not been corrupted by sin. It was the Holy Spirit that brought Christ out of Hades.

Verse 28-29: Peter points out with further proof that these verses pertained to the Messiah is that David's tomb is located in the city of Jerusalem and even though it had been robbed through the years of captivity. Davids body had not been resurrected from the dead.

Verse 30: The fact was that David was told that one of his descendants would be seated on the throne. Jesus' linage can be traced back from Mary to David through one son. It can also be traced back through Joseph even though Jesus was conceived by the Holy Spirit.

Verse 31: David saw ahead in the future and spoke of the resurrection of the Messiah. The events these men saw on that morning were a direct effect of the Holy Spirit.

Verse 32: The twelve had all seen Jesus in this forty day period and they were convinced that nothing else was of greater importance then to share this message.

Verse 33: The Holy Spirit came today under the authority of Jesus, and these are the things you have seen and heard just as the Prophet Joel had told.

Verse 34-35: Peter offers more proof again by indicating that David was not resurrected or ascended into heaven by quoting Psalm 110. "The Lord said to my Lord" loses its impact from Hebrew to English in the translation. In the Hebrew this verse actually indicates that Jehovah (God) the father said to Adonai (Jesus the son) sit at my right hand. The right hand of God is reserved for the Messiah and surely not David.  

Verse 36: There should be know hesitation or mistaking that Jesus had fulfilled prophecy, and that God made him both Lord and Christ. 

Verse 37: "When they heard this" message they knew they had heard the truth. The evidence was there from the birth to the ascension of Christ Jesus. These men where so convinced that Peter's words were true that it pierced they're hearts. They were so smitten that they had to ask "What shall we do?" How can you know what to do unless you ask and be so instructed? Romans 10:17 tells us that faith comes by hearing the word of God. They believe the message that Jesus is the Messiah and as such make that a confession by asking what must we do. To the faith only teachers Peter would say, nothing all you have to do is believe. But Peter does not say anything remotely close to the faith only doctrine. 

Verse 38: "What Shall we do" is merely a way of saying how can we be saved. Peter responds by saying; "Repent and be baptized every one of you". Repent is plural in this passage and it requires that every person repent of their sins. Baptism is taken from the Greek word (baptizo) is singular and requires each person to make an individual choice. If you repent and get baptized in the name of Jesus there is the promise of remission of sins and to receive the Holy Spirit. This eliminates infant baptism, being baptized for someone else, it eliminates the sinners prayer, and praying through.

Verse 39: " For the promise is for you" is a very unique statement for the establishment of this New Covenant. A promise had been given to Abraham, and the law did not nullify the promise. But the new promise (the New Covenant) will nullify the law. The law was written for Israel so we could know what was sin and civil laws where. Remember, Israel came out of Egypt and had know ideal how to run a nation. They had been slaves and the law taught them how to live righteous as Gods people. The law is only a guide line for righteous living under this New Covenant as we are saved by Grace. It also pertained to their Children and to those who were a far off. In that statement we can find that everyone is covered by this promise of salvation. God has open the door to all through Jesus and by the preaching of the gospel. Again we go back to Romans 10:17 and realize that Gods call is not some predestination of picking individuals, it is those who hear the message, believe, confess, repent, and are baptized God predestine to become his children

Verse 40: What Peter continued to preach we are not told, but it exhorted the men who were listening too responded. "Be saved from this perverse generation!" "Be saved" when read in the Greek it lets us know that action is required. Their is an obedience to the will of God that is required through Jesus. Those who would argue salvation is free because of grace miss understand the scriptures. What the scriptures tell us  is because of Gods grace we have salvation. When we hear that word grace we think in the terms of "unmerited favor. But in the Greek it is the word "charis" and it means to rejoice and signified "favor" "goodwill", and "loving kindness". God made the way of salvation not men that was grace, you can't buy it, sell it to someone else, work to get it. It is the way God choose to provide salvation and He will reject any other method. So it goes beyond just unmerited favor it goes on the bases that God in his good will choose to do it this way. The divine plan of salvation is potentially available to those who seek out Gods favor. God's grace was never intended to be separated from the will of God. Take away from Gods will and all you have is a condition. The Christian Courier.com does a great job of illustrating this fact. " The principle is illustrated by the example of Noah, who found grace in the eyes of the Lord" (Genesis 6:8); and yet, as the writer of Hebrews shows, the patriarch and his family were saved by preparing an ark in obedience to God's instruction (Hebrew 11:7 and Genesis 6:22)." If Salvation is by Grace and all I have to do is believe then Noah mocked God by building the ark.  (even though God had told him too) Noah followed Gods instructions a prevision of what God had required.

Verse 41: "They received his word" is better translated convinced them by reasoning. The response was to be baptized like Peter had instructed them in verse 38. As such 3000 men responded to the message and their souls were added to or joined together with Christ along with the twelve. It does not say they were added too a church or local congregation as no such thing existed at this point. The Greek says the "Ekklisia" is called out or elect it does not mean the church. Scripture rightfully refers to such as the body of believers, the body of Christ which tells us they were added to a spiritual kingdom. 

Footnote: we know these 3000 were men because women and children were in the women's part of the temple.

Verse 42: These 3000 didn't waste anytime as they devoted themselves to four things. Remember verse 5 told us they were devote men. They devoted themselves to the apostles doctrine which was inspired by the Holy Spirit and in due time was written down and formed into the New Testament of which we have today.

They also came together for fellowship and this is were many churches fail as it is not a lunch after the morning service. Fellowship is coming together for participation in helping the poor. A prime example would be like the Amish coming together to build a house or barn for another or the poor. A church is at its strongest when it has the congregation meeting together to accomplish a task. Everyone who participates has a common interest for the welfare of the brethren and others.

"To the breaking of the bread" is how this reads in the Greek and since we are talking about what they considered worship we understand that the Lords Supper was a part of that worship.

"And to prayer" and as we see later in scripture when they came together in prayer it was a matter of life and death and they prayed with such fervor that it often shook the foundations. 

Verse 43: As such the believers and unbelievers were in awe about what was going on in their worship. As many signs and wonders were being done by the twelve that challenged people to think how this could only be from God. If the 120 had received the power of speaking in tongues, gift of healing I'm sure it would have told us right here. So this is another verse that reinforces the fact that only the twelve were given the power.

Verse 44: This atmosphere brought all the believers into unity and they shared in common all the things they had which is a far cry from many religions.

Verse 45: As such believers began to sell everything and share with those who were in need.

Verse 46: It was a daily practice for the believers to still go up to the temple for prayer time at 9am, noon, 3pm. After being at the temple they went from house to house and broke bread, a practice that indicated you were together in a covenant agreement with each other. Such might be done before a meal as it does goes ahead and tell us "they were taking their meals together". The breaking of bread here is not the Lords Supper it was a custom of Israel in those days and now was being practice by the believers.

Verse 47: This daily practice of unity was the reason for praising God and it astonished the Jews because they did not enjoy the same kind of fellowship. Because of this daily display of unity the Lord added more people daily to their number. The 3000 men who had come to Christ most likely were converting family and friends on a daily bases.