This past Sunday we celebrated Pentecost. Most people only know Pentecost as a Christian holiday, where we commemorate the day when the Holy Spirit fell on the Apostles of Christ as they gathered together in the upper room, after the Ascension of Jesus. Scripture (Acts 2) actually tells us that Jews from many different nations were in Jerusalem that day. They were there celebrating the Jewish Feast of Pentecost.
It’s true; Pentecost is originally a Jewish holiday. It’s one of the three great feasts, along with Passover and Tabernacles, on the Jewish calendar. It has a historical significance, as it commemorates God giving the Torah to Moses on Mt. Sinai. It also commemorates the time when the first fruits of the wheat harvest were brought to the Temple in the form of leavened bread (Lev 23:17).
So we may ask ourselves why did Jesus choose to pour out His spirit on His Church during this very Jewish holiday?
The idea that people had gathered together to celebrate a harvest ties in perfectly with the fact that a great “harvest” for the Lord was experienced! The New Covenant was put into effect with full force. This day truly was the beginning of the Church…our “birthday”, if you will. That very day 3000 people came to Christ and were baptized after hearing Peter’s teaching! (Acts 2:37-39) Pentecost really was the FIRST great revival!
Do you remember learning about the Holy Spirit as a kid? The Trinity can be a tricky thing to grasp, much less teach to kids. When talking to your kids about Pentecost and the significance it has in our lives, remind them that as Jesus was preparing to go to Heaven, He made a promise. He told His Disciples that even though He would be leaving them and wouldn’t be here on Earth as a man, He would NOT be leaving them all alone. He promised to send something else: The Holy Spirit.
If a child doesn’t exactly understand what the Holy Spirit is, maybe tell them that it’s something that we feel inside that helps us know and understand God’s love and a way which we feel God’s actual presence in our lives. In fact here we are, over 2000 years later, still feeling God’s love and presence exactly like they did on that day of Pentecost!
God loves us so much that He sent us His Son Jesus and then His Spirit to teach us about that perfect love!
How do you talk to your kids about The Holy Spirit and Pentecost?