The Meaning of Pentecost

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place.” (Acts 2:1)

The day of Pentecost in Christianity is remembered as a distinctive point when the power of the Holy Spirit came down on apostles and disciples and revealed His acting intervention that continued throughout the expansion of the church. It is a day that Christians celebrate and commemorate the initiation of the powerful work of the Spirit in the new era.

Pentecost had long been celebrated even before this landmark day for Christians. It was originally Jewish religion that commemorated the day of Pentecost as a special day to thank God for their harvests. On the fiftieth day after the First Fruits, Jews gathered to bring offerings from their harvests on the Pentecost day also known as the Feast of Weeks.

The original meaning of Pentecost includes the number forty-nine which means seven weeks. The number seven that is known for the fullness of divine power goes seven times and reaches the fiftieth, culminating in the point that fulfills the power of God at the height.

It is the day that liberates every bound situation of life that includes debts, slavery, imprisonments, and others. Jews released slaves, canceled debts, and released prisoners when the fiftieth year of Jubilee approached.

In line with this original meaning of Jewish Pentecost, Christians also celebrate the cosmic redemption of human souls that were held in universal bondage of sin and evil to be liberated through the blood of Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit. It is the day that Christians not only thank God for the giving of the Holy Spirit as a gift but also express joy and gratitude for their salvation from the fate of eternal punishment due to sins.

Regenerated believers are the spiritual fruits produced from harvests of salvation. Just as Jews offered bread made from their harvested grains to the Lord on Pentecost, Christians come to the Lord as fruits of salvation as spiritual acts of worship. People of God filled with the power of the Holy Spirit and purified through the blood of Christ are the best sacrifices before God.

The day of Pentecost, therefore, commemorates life and joy for Christians who were liberated from chains of sin and welcomed to the world of God’s love. Their life will be led by the Holy Spirit who defends and protects them until the end of this age.