Pentecost is the day that the Bible has been leaning toward since Genesis. Pentecost is a culmination of God’s promises. When Adam and Eve rebelled, they were removed from God’s presence and they could not go back to Him as the path was guarded by a flaming sword. God promised that it would not always be this way, but that one day the Seed of the woman would come and crush the head of the Serpent. But until that day, God’s presence has always been guarded. When He dwelt in the Tabernacle He was guarded by the priests. If you came close to the Ark of the Covenant, they would run you through with a spear. In the Temple, God’s presence was guarded by the priests and the king. He has always been with His people, yet He has always been separate for the church has always been unclean, because the promise of Genesis 3:15 had not been fulfilled.
The fulfillment of Genesis 3:15, the Seed crushing the head of the Serpent, was done when Jesus died. Victory came through death. Jesus won by losing, and because of His suffering His people can join Him out of the grave. He suffered the curse the Dragon brought into this world, and He overcame it. In Christ, we die and are raised to new life. There is no longer a flaming sword standing between God and us, rather God gives His church both the Spirit (fire) and truth (sword). These things belong to us, and this transaction has been longed for for thousands of years. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit has been a yearning in the church since the days of the patriarchs.
Moses sets forth his desire and hope that all of God’s people would become prophets and receive the Holy Spirit (Numbers 11:29). Moses saw it coming.
And the prophet Joel saw it coming (Joel 2:28-29) as he delivered the Word of God that all of His people, from the least to the greatest (including infants), would receive His Holy Spirit.
Paul, speaking after Pentecost, wishes that everyone in the church would prophesy (1 Corinthians 14:5) and Paul really thinks that this can happen. Why?
Well, at Pentecost, the longing of the arch of the story of the Bible has been fulfilled, God with us. God is now with His people (Acts 2:1-4) and His people are on fire consuming the world as the Holy Spirit directs (2 Peter 3:10). The Holy Spirit has come, fire has been poured out from God upon earth (Revelation 8:1-5), and all of creation is being made new starting with your heart (Acts 2:38).
All this has happened, just as Christ said it would, “I came to cast fire on the earth, and would that it were already kindled! I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how great is my distress until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to give peace on earth? No, I tell you, but rather division” (Luke 12:49-51 ESV).
The earth is being remade by fire, and it is the fire of the church covered by the Holy Spirit. We are the new creation bringing God’s kingdom from heaven to earth. We pray His kingdom come, not His kingdom go. The Holy Spirit came as a wrecking ball to destroy the old world and remake the heavens and the earth under the authority of Christ. Soli Deo Gloria.