Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning!
No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.
Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.
I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke.
The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord.
And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’
“Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know.
This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross.
But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.
[Preparation: Take a deep breath and exhale slowly….do it again. One more time. Place yourself gently in the presence of your God]
Word of Hope
This passage reveals one of the more dramatic examples of the presence of the Holy Spirit. The people of Jerusalem following that most eventful weekend that saw the execution of Jesus of Nazareth were now hearing from his apostles. These timid and generally uneducated men where loudly proclaiming Jesus as Messiah and Lord and in multiple languages so that everyone within earshot could understand.
The people thought that the disciples of Jesus were drunk, and Peter simply countered that it was early in the morning and not typical behavior! He was “drunk” in the power of the Spirit that gave him courage and confidence and life-altering joy that he and the others had seen the
One that they had last seen on Golgotha last Friday. How would you react if your saw a friend who dies in a car crash on Friday and then he visited with you in the flesh on Sunday?
The Apostles were shocked and inspired in the same way but even greater since it was with the power of God. There would be time enough for fear and disagreement later, but not on this special day when they were on fire with courage and hope and love and faith in the Risen Lord.
O Holy One! We find you in others and the events of our lives and through prayer. Our reflection upon Scripture is also an occasion to find you, to hear you and to rejoice in all that you are to us. Help us to be ever mindful of your presence with us and allow us to proclaim it as boldly as the Apostles did so many years ago. Let others be amazed by our faith and our proclamations and our joy that you are among us each day now and forever.
[Take a deep breath and exhale slowly….do it again.]
Cathedral of Hope / United Church of Christ