Biblical story of Pentecost

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Biblical story of Pentecost

Posted on May 23, 2010 Updated on May 23, 2010


“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.” v1

Pentecost happened at an appointed time, in an appointed place with an appointed people. There was unity in the midst of those who had gathered continuously and with definite purpose to seek God for the promised outpouring. Men and women contended together for visitation from the Lord. They did not know the exact time it would happen, or even the precise manner in which God would meet with them, but nonetheless they understood that they were moving towards a manifestation of heaven on earth heretofore unknown and their total individual and corporate focus was in meeting with God in a life-changing encounter.

As we celebrate Pentecost today, God is still looking for a desperate people who are longing to meet with Him in surrender to presence, so that He might fill us up with the power of His Spirit and send us out to a world in deep need of His transformational love.

“Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.” v2

It has been my experience that the “suddenly” of God is usually preceded by a time of waiting; by what we might consider a time of spiritual wilderness, which ultimately produces a worshipful response in us as we wait upon the Lord for breakthrough. It is my firm conviction that we are entering into a new season this Pentecost, whereby our victory in Christ will manifest with miracles, signs and wonders following.

The harvest anointing is going to catapult a people of His presence into the next stage of destiny fruitfulness and divine fulfilment.

At Pentecost, the sound of heaven was released on earth with awe inspiring effects; it must have been an awesome event to witness, as the wind and the fire from heaven as it came in fulfilment of the promised gift of the Holy Spirit being given to the church.

We can never outdo God and the “latter rains” of His glory will come as such a deluge that we will never be able to fully prepare for what is coming, yet God positions us for blessing and breakthrough by creating faith expectation and a longing for more of His love, presence and power in our hearts.

William Seymour, whom God used as a mighty revivalist during Azusa Street Revival (1906-1910), prophesied that 100 years on from the Azusa Street revival, there would be another global outpouring that would be released from heaven to change earth, the scope of which we have never seen before. We now stand on the 100 year time line of Mr Seymour’s prophecy coming to pass. Beloved saints, it is time for another glory outpouring that will sweep millions into the Kingdom. Are we waiting with deep expectation? Are we ready and willing for the fire of God to fall afresh on our lives so that we might share it with others?

“They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each one of them.” v3

In this Pentecostal, pre-ordained moment of outpouring, everyone’s spiritual eyes were opened to see how heaven was touching earth. No one was in any doubt that God was on the move!

It is said of the Azusa Street Revival that fire was seen coming down from heaven to touch the little warehouse where the revival meetings were held, and simultaneously fire was seen rising up from the roof of the same building. When the fire of God was burning – everyone could see the fire! In this move of God that is coming to the earth, spiritual eyes and ears are going to be opened to the majesty of God as He moves on the earth to bring spiritual awakening to the masses. God’s fire is going to be seen by believers and unbelievers alike and God’s name will be revered in all the earth.

The following extract vividly recalls a moment of the fire of God burning in Azusa Street.

When I asked her to describe the Shekinah Glory Fire reported by many, she told her story. She recalled the fire department coming because of a call that the building was on fire. When they arrived, they didn’t smell any smoke or see any evidence of fire. She remembered that it was Seymour, Bosworth, Lake, Smith and Sines that ran out.

Sister Carney did go out one time to see the flames for herself. Remember the fire department had been called on several different occasions, as passers-by would report seeing flames leaping up from the roof of the building. Finally, Sister Carney asked John Lake why the fire department kept coming and looking for the fire. He explained that the fire was coming down from heaven into the building and fire was going up from the building and meeting the fire coming down. Fascinated, Sister Carney went out, walked about half a block and saw the awesome sight for herself. To her, this divine connection was just further evidence of God’s mighty Presence in that place.

Sister Carney noted that although the Shekinah Glory was present all the time within the building, this divine connection wasn’t an everyday occurrence. Whenever this connection was present, the power was even more intense within the meeting.”

The glory of God is sometimes visible as a cloud or mist (Exodus 24:16-17). Jesus also spoke about wanting us to see his glory, “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because loved me before the creation of the world.” John 17:24

I saw the glory cloud for the first time when I ministered in Connecticut, USA around ten years ago. I was amazed when God opened my spiritual eyes to see this beautiful manifestation of His presence. Since that time I have been privileged on many occasions to see the glory cloud of God.

Whist ministering in France a few years ago, I was listening to a fellow minister (Avner Boskey) share about Israel and France’s history; the longer Avner spoke, the more intense the glory cloud became until I could barely see him. Following the teaching time we entered into a time of deep national repentance for the historical sins that France had committed against Israel as a nation. It is my firm belief that the glory of God enabled us to enter into the atmosphere of heaven, access His heart and respond with humility, obedience and love so that God could release blessing on the nation.

The fire of God that touched the believers on the day of Pentecost was a personal encounter with the holy presence of God. We cannot remain the same when we have met with God in the inner chamber of His heart. His fire consecrates us and sets us apart for His work. His fire speaks of holiness and purity, bringing healing and cleansing wherever it comes to rest. His fire is His love and our hearts melt in the beauty of His presence.

I recall the first time I encountered the fire of God in a personal way. Two pastors from Argentina were sharing about the Holy Spirit and my heart’s desire was to experience more of Him. In that moment God opened my spiritual eyes (in like manner to Elisha’s servants eyes being opened see 2 Kings 6:17), and I saw what looked like a ball of holy fire coming towards me at high speed. That “ball of fire” was the power of the Holy Spirit and when it touched my body, I experienced a deep and fresh baptism of the Holy Spirit.

I ministered in a youth gathering on one occasion and preached on the fire of God. As I shared, most people in the meeting could smell a strong odour of burning, but there was no physical fire present! God presence was “burning” in our midst (thankfully, no one needed to call the fire department that day!)

Pentecost, two thousand years ago, was a corporate outpouring but it still had an individual application on those who earnestly awaited the Holy Spirit. To such adoring hearts, God conferred the blessing of His fiery presence resting upon them. Saints, in the coming days God is going to bless us again with another wave of His Spirit and holy fire that will consume the darkness and advance the Kingdom of God.

“All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.” v4

God was doing a new thing on the day of Pentecost. We must acknowledge that with each and every precedent, there has to be a beginning, a time when we must embrace something we have not previously known. As we walk with God we are brought into new levels of understanding and comprehension of the mystery of the Gospel through God’s word and through the teaching, revelation and impartation of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is a wonderful teacher and unlocks the mystery of the Kingdom to every seeking heart. Perhaps we might say that His mission is to reveal God’s love.

We read of spiritual outpouring at Azusa Street often brought about through singing in the Spirit:

“Soon after the singing started, Seymour would instruct the people to “Sing in the Spirit.” Whenever that happened, heaven itself came down and filled the room. The music was beyond description, pure yet powerful. This heavenly music became known as a “new song” as the crowd began to sing in heavenly language, sometimes in tongues, sometimes without words. At times it seemed as if angels joined in the singing. “Singing in the Spirit” was a new song led by the Spirit of God.”

(Extract “Azusa Street, “They told me their stories” the youth and children of Azusa Street tell their stories.” By Billye Brim, Dare 2 Dream Publications. )

Last November, I was ministering with my GGM team in Kenya. We had gone deep into the village to meet with spiritually hungry leaders and believers alike. We were ministering by God’s grace to men, women and children and at one point I felt we needed to sing in the Spirit to breakthrough into God’s blessing. The African leaders looked at me a little bit unsure of what I was suggesting as I requested them to sing along. I began to sing in the Spirit with our worship leader Mary by my side.

She gave testimony that as I sang in the Spirit, she had a sensation of cool, refreshing water running over her and cleansing her inside and out. After she shared, we continued to sing in the Spirit, with momentum gathering and God released a healing outpouring in the meeting at which time many present were set free from pain and bondage and brought into deliverance and healing. Hallelujah!

“Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?” v12

All the Jews present on the day of Pentecost were able to understand what was being said and they were utterly amazed that each heard it in his own language as God’s wonders were declared to a watching world, making known the mystery of God’s love in Christ. In this end-time global outpouring, I believe that every culture will experience a touch of God’s fiery, unquenchable love. The writer of Song of Songs sums it up magnificently thus, “Many waters cannot quench love; rivers cannot wash it away.” SoS 8:7a God’s love is going to woo the multitudes into His loving arms.

“Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.” v13

The disciples were accused of being drunk yet it was only 9 o’clock in the morning!

The revivalist William Seymour had an odd practise of placing a box on his head in meetings and sitting under it until God told him to come out. Perhaps some onlookers at that time wondered if Mr Seymour was drunk or in his right mind, just as some wondered about the apostles on the day of Pentecost?

“When Seymour came down to the meeting, he would sit down and put a box on his head. At first, it startled Sister Carney. Sometimes he would sit with the box over his head for ten minutes and sometimes it would be an hour or more. Although the practise seemed ridiculous, Sister Carney realised that he was obeying God, no matter how silly or ridiculous it appeared.

That apparent act of humble obedience led to mighty power when he removed the box. This box and act of humility was critical to the power God displayed through Brother Seymour. When Brother Smith asked Sister Carney what caused the miracles and Azusa to stop, she replied, “It was stopped when Brother Seymour stopped putting that box over his head. When he quit coming down and putting the box on his head, it started dying.”

“The greatest thing that impressed Anderson was when the Spirit would fall on Seymour and he would start working the gifts. Anderson would get up on the benches so he could see Seymour talking to the people. There were quite a few times that there were people with what looked like rheumatoid arthritis, and Seymour would point to maybe a dozen of them and say, “You want to see a miracle over there?” Every one of you within a few minutes are going to be up and walking in the Name of Jesus.” And every one of them – you could hear their bones popping – would be up shouting as their legs and arms and hands were straightened out.

A few times Anderson witnessed Seymour perform one-on-one healings. One such healing stood out in Anderson’s memory. A man whose face was deformed with small growths all over his face came to Brother Seymour. The deformed man looked very homely and ugly. Brother Seymour prayed for him, and immediately the growths began to fall off his face, restoring his face and making him whole. Perhaps the most stunning detail is that volunteers had to come and clean up those growths that had fallen from the man’s face to the floor.”

God sometimes asks us to do unusual or strange things and whilst we must avoid unnecessary drama, or try to draw attention to one self, we must be earnest to flow with the Holy Spirit and obey His instructions.

Last year God asked me to pray and to physically bind a tree with a rope during a preaching session in a tent conference in Africa. Initially, I was reluctant to obey, however the Holy Spirit helped me to comprehend that the purpose of the binding was a physical representation of what God’s power was accomplishing in the spiritual realm – i.e. binding the forces of darkness (witchcraft) from operating in that meeting. God had revealed to me by His Spirit, that a witch doctor was cursing our meeting at that very moment in time.

While we prayed to bind the spirit of witchcraft and loose the resurrection power of Christ, a huge lorry overturned on the roadside, losing its load and causing quite a stir. We rushed over to see if everyone was alright and were amazed that despite the fact the lorry had overturned at high speed, had lost all its load and the driver had gone out through the window of the vehicle as it smashed on impact, neither the driver nor a single person in the crowd was hurt even slightly.

Glory to God! We believe that God moved in power as we prayed and bound the spirit of witchcraft from operating. If we had not prayed and acted in obedience at the precise time God had told us to pray, it is possible the driver and others could have lost their lives. We were later informed that the land on which the tree had been bound had previously been cursed and many people had been afraid to even step on the ground. We broke the curse in the mighty name of Jesus and released God’s blessing!

It is said of Messiah, “The mighty man will become tinder and his work a spark; both will burn together, with no one to quench the fire.” Isaiah 1:31

We, too, are called to a baptism of Holy Spirit and fire, “I baptise you with water for repentance. But after me will come one whose sandals I am not fit to carry. He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire.” Matthew 3:11

This Pentecost may we, as God’s people, posture ourselves in servant love before Him, adoring Him with all that we are so that He might release of a fresh wave of Holy Spirit and glory fire upon, to and through us for global mission!

Together in the Harvest,

Catherine Brown

Founder, Gatekeepers Global Ministries (7 million souls mandate))



All book quotations are taken from “Azusa Street, “They told me their stories” the youth and children of Azusa Street tell their stories.” By Billye Brim, Dare 2 Dream Publications. Azusastories. com

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