SERMON TITLE: “Acts of the Spirit: Empowerment of the Spirit”
SERMON TEXT: Acts 2:1-21
PREACHER: Rev. Kim James
OCCASION: May 23, 2021 (Pentecost) at First UMC
“Thanks!” to all of you who wore red clothing today to help us celebrate the flames of Pentecost. I always like to make a big deal about Pentecost because I don’t think it gets enough attention. If you ask the average person what’s the most important Christian holiday, they’ll probably say Christmas or Easter. But I always say that the most important Christian day is Pentecost. I say that because, what if Jesus were born and died and rose from the grave, but no one ever talked about it? What if, at the end of the gospels, the disciples had just returned to their fishing boats and tax booths and the Holy Spirit had never come upon them? What if they had never gotten excited enough to go out and tell the good news?
That’s why I’m devoting two months of sermons to the “Acts of the Spirit.” We began last Sunday by reading from Acts, chapter one, about Jesus’ ascension to heaven and the planned succession of the Spirit to the disciples and beyond. Today, we’ve moved on to Acts, chapter two. It was the annual Jewish Feast of Weeks harvest festival. It was also known as Pentecost, because it came 50 days after the Passover celebration. Following Jesus’ instructions, the Christian believers were gathered together there in Jerusalem, expectantly praying and waiting for the Spirit to come. And, wow, did it ever come! As we consider the wind, fire, and languages that characterized that day, let’s see how we too might share in the empowerment of the Spirit.