Link for recorded Sunday service,
PENTECOST AND THE CHURCH TODAY – 2
All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as
the Spirit gave them utterance (Acts 2:4).
Last year (2020) Pentecost, I shared with you 3 out of ten truth that the church needs to
tap into for growth and relevant. This year, we reflect on 2 closely related truths:
When I came to the UK afresh, some people struggled understand me when I spoke.
Least did they know that it was a mutual struggle. In a conversation of about 10 words,
I said pardon about 4 times and the other party did same. Now my Pentecost has come,
and I can better communicate with people. Pentecost was one such a day when the
disciples could communicate the truth of God in languages that could connect them to
Pentecost give us utterance to unite us in mission. When the Holy Spirit came upon the
disciples, they spoke in different tongues, languages that were clearly distinct from the
Aramaic language that people could associate them with or Greek, the international
Language of the Roman empire at the time. Acts 2:9-11 explain that there were people
from different parts of the world that spoke different languages but as the disciples
spoke, they heard them in their own language of birth. It is either the disciples were
speaking these foreign languages, or the Holy Spirit translated the Aramaic or the Greek
that the disciples spoke into different languages that could enable all who were gathered
to hear the mystery of God that the disciples were declaring.
We know from Genesis 11 that until the story of the tower of Babel, the whole earth
spoke the same language. This one language united the people such that God realised
that if he does not confuse their language, whatever they plan to do, including the
rebellion against God, disobedience to spread throughout the world and the pride of
self-elevation, they will be able to do. So, God gave them different languages that
scattered them on the surface of the earth and quashed their rebellion. At Pentecost,
however, God used different languages to unite the people in hearing the mysteries of
God and to enable obedience to Christ to spread the gospel.
Equally important is the fact that with the utterance of Pentecost, we are enabled to
speak such that people will hear the word of God in ‘their own languages’. This implies
that the church must be able to meet the needs of all people of all ages and all pursuit
so that we can reach them with the word of God whoever and wherever they are. One
group of people that the church has struggled in communicating the gospel to and
keeping them in its fold is ‘Young People’. It is a difficulty understanding young people
and getting them to do anything. We need to ask hard questions and provide solid
answers in collaboration with the young people themselves so that they can hear us in
their own language. The starting point may be to stop planning activities and
programmes for young people but instead, plan with them in a way that will make them
interested and committed. Let the younger generation hear us in their own language.