Read Acts 2
In Acts 2:1-4, we will read about the coming of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost. Pentecost means “fiftieth” and refers to the Feast of Weeks (Exodus 34:22-23) or Harvest (Leviticus 23:16) which was celebrated 50 days after Passover. At Pentecost, an offering of firstfruits was made so this fulfilled a “type and shadow” prophecy (a picture of something that will happen in the future) that the Holy Spirit would come on this day as the firstfruits of the believer’s inheritance. It was also the church’s inheritance of the firstfruits of believers.
In Acts 2:5-13, we will read about the disciples who were speaking in tongues or dialects, which were known languages not ecstatic utterances. As the believers were speaking, every person in the crowd could recognize the language from their own country.
And finally in Acts 2:14-42, the first major event of church history was Peter’s sermon, in which the Holy Spirit saved 3,000 people and established the church. Highlights of Peter’s sermon is the gospel message citing God’s preordained plan of sacrificing Christ (vs. 23), a declaration of Christ’s Lordship and Messiahship (vs. 36), and call to repentance (vs. 38). And the early church flourished in the apostles teaching, fellowship, breaking of bread, and prayer (vs. 42). The final section of verses 43-47 show the practical growth and fruit of the Spirit in the early church.
1. What does the term “baptism of the Holy Spirit” mean? What do other passages in the Bible teach about the baptism of the Spirit? Read 1 Corinthians 12:12-13, Galatians 3:27, Romans 6:3-4, and John 17:11, 21-23.
2. Why was the purpose of speaking in tongues or the dialects of the foreigners in Jerusalem? (Hebrews 2:3-4 may help to answer this)
3. Why does God not need to use miraculous signs of speaking in tongues and signs and wonders today (only occurs two more times in Acts 10:46, 19:6)?
4. Using your own words, briefly write out how you would respond to someone who says the baptism of the Spirit happens some time after a person becomes saved.
5. When we tell someone the gospel as Peter did in his sermon, in what way should we encourage the person to respond? (Refer to verses 21 and 38 as well as Ephesians 2:8-9 and Mark 1:14-15)
6. If baptism is not necessary part for someone to be saved, why did Peter include this in his instructions to the listeners in verse 38?
7. Do you find the qualities of the believers in verse 42 to be evident in your life?
Ephesians 5:19-21 and Galatians 5:22-25 lists the results of being filled with the Holy Spirit. Do these things characterize your life? As a way of yielding more of your life to the Holy Spirit, consider what specific actions you can take now that would strengthen or bring about those characteristics in your life.