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Sermon 2019-06-09 Alan Frauenstein

The Coming of the Holy Spirit

Acts 2: 1 – 13

As we continue our series on the Holy Spirit, today we are in Acts 2: 1 – 13 – READ.


  1. One Accord V1
  2. Audible Arrival V 2
  3. Visible Visitation V 3
  4. Cultural Curiosity V 4 to 11
  5. Amazing Miracle OR Counterfeit Spirit V 12-13
  6. What DOES this Mean?


  1. One Accord V 1

I specifically chose to read from the King James Version (KJV) as it makes an important distinction. Most versions say, “they were all together in one place”.

However, the KJV says: “they were all with one accord in one place.” KJV

I think this makes an important distinction – a historical fact. Not only were they all together in one place, they were all of one mind – unanimous, in agreement.

How is it that they were all together – both physically (location) and mentally of the same mind?


Because parallel to the Jewish festivals they had seen significant events in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ:

  • Festival of Passover: Just as the blood of the sacrificial lamb on the doorposts saved the firstborn, so too the sacrificial blood of Christ on the cross saves us of sin.
  • Festival of Unleavened Bread: Just as the Israelites were separated from a Godless and sinful Egyptian people, so too can we are separated from our sin and eternal death.
  • Festival of First Fruits: Just as the Jews were celebrating what God had done for them, so too Christ revealed Himself to them over a period of 40 days and spoke about the Kingdom of Heaven.
  • Next comes the Festival of Pentecost – just days away. If you do not know, this is the day on which the Jews celebrate being given the 10 Commandments.


A few days ago, though, Jesus had promised them the Baptism of the Holy Spirit and instructed them to wait in Jerusalem.

And immediately after he says this, He ascends into heaven before their very eyes!!

He is taken up and a cloud hid him from their sight.

They had seen Jesus do some pretty amazing things – like walk on water, but this still must have been completely totally amazing.

And while they are standing there in total amazement and looking intently up into the sky suddenly two men dressed in white robes appeared standing beside them and ask

11 “Men of Galilee,” they said, “why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven.”

Who gets excited when you think about that? That’s amazing – He is going to come back the same way He left! Isn’t that exciting to think about.

When we look at the world around us what do we see? Folks, I see the times of Noah, I see Sodom and Gomorrah, and I remember what Jesus said – there will be wars and rumours of wars, famines and earthquakes, persecution and hatred of Christians, false prophets who will deceive many people and because of these things and the absolute wickedness in the world the love of many will grow cold.

But the one who stands firm to the end will be saved and this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

Do you see these things happening – Jesus said – look up – for your salvation draws nigh!

Who believes that Jesus could return ………….today…………. This very day! Hallelujah. Does that not excite you – gives me Goosebumps?

Jesus is gone, but He is coming back! HALLELUJAH.

Directly after the ascension, they had returned to the home in Jerusalem to the room where they were staying.

Peter brings them back to earth, so to speak, and reminds them of the practical things that needed to be done, so they set about their normal business:

  • They had spent time in fellowship, worship and prayer
  • They appointed Mathias as the replacement for Judas


Can you imagine – there must have been a sense of excitement! Waiting for the promised gift. Can’t leave Jerusalem! Waiting!

The mood is positive. Not the scared and scattered disciples we saw after the crucifixion O NO, they had seen the risen Lord. They had seen the First Fruits. They knew the Holy Spirit was coming! AND THEY WERE WAITING! 

AND THAT IS WHY – when the day of Pentecost fully came, they were all in one place and of one mind. 

  1. Audible Arrival of the Spirit

 Verse 2:  Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting.

 Very Audible – great roaring wind – a violent wind and LOUD so loud people came running to see what the noise was.

Would you like God to reveal Himself to you in miraculous ways that you can undoubtedly know it is Him?

The story is told of a man was having difficulty communicating with his wife and concluded that she was becoming hard of hearing. So, he decided to conduct a test without her knowing about it. One evening he came up behind her when she was sitting in a chair – she did not know he was there. Very quietly he whispered, “Can you hear me?” There was no response. Moving a little closer, he asked again, “Can you hear me now?” Still no reply.

Quietly he edged closer and whispered the same words, but still no answer. Finally he moved right in behind her chair and said, “Can you hear me now?” To his surprise she responded with irritation in her voice, “For the fourth time, yes!”

In 1 Kings19 we read the story of Elijah who was in trouble and needed desperately to hear from God. And God did speak to him, first came a great wind – but the Lord was not in the wind, then an earthquake – but the Lord was not in the earthquake and finally a fire – but the Lord was not in the fire.  When God did speak to him God’s message came in a “gentle whisper”.

God may use dramatic methods to work in your life or He may speak in a gentle whisper. Wait patiently and always be open, listening. BE READY!

  1. Visible Visitation of the Spirit

 Verse 3: They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.

Visible – Tongues of fire. Why tongues? Tongues symbolise speech and the communication of the Good News. 

Why flames? Fulfilment of prophecy: Matthew 3:11 11 “I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. 

  • Fire symbolises God’s purifying presence, which burns away the undesirable elements of our lives and sets our hearts alight to bear witness.
  • Remember, this Pentecost, a celebration of the 10 commandments. Now when God gave Moses the 10 Commandments, the whole of Mount Sinai was covered in smoke as God engulfed it with fire. God confirmed the validity of the Old Testament law with fire from heaven. Exodus 19: 18
  • Here at Pentecost, God again confirms the validity of the Holy Spirit’s ministry by sending fire. 

God made His presence known to this group of believers in a spectacular way – roaring wind and flaming fire!

  1. Cultural Curiosity V 4 to 11

Because the world has changed so much since the time of our text, we possibly don’t realise the full impact of what happened. How complex was the situation culturally and linguistically speaking? The geographical location is one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse regions in the world.

More than 60 languages spoken. And they heard about the wonders of God in their own tongues! 

If we were to read that list in today’s equivalent terms, this is what it would sound like:

Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Turkmenistan  and Khuzestan; residents of  IraqKuwait and the eastern parts of Syria, Judea, Lebanon and all of Turkey, and Asia,  and Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Greek Islanders and Saudi Arabians. Bahrain, Cyprus, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, United Arab Emirates and Yemen.

Quite a list hey?

  1. Amazing Miracle OR Counterfeit Spirit V 12-13

As this amazing miracle of God unfolds, people are obviously perplexed. Nothing like this has ever been seen or even heard of before. It can’t be “rationally” explained within common human experience to that point in time.

Some ask, “What does this mean?” but others made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.”

So, Satan doing what he has always done:

  • he discredits the work of God and
  • he counterfeits the work of God.

Satan will always try and counterfeit what God is doing. By counterfeit I mean he will imitate it, he will copy it and present it as holy. But there is nothing holy about it.

He did it then on the day of Pentecost, trying to discredit what God is doing through the Holy Spirit, and he is still doing it today.

Some leaders in some churches today promote what they call being “drunk in the Spirit”. Congregations are encouraged to “get drunk,” in the holy spirit, to cast off all restraint and go stumbling around, falling to the ground, their speech becomes slurred and other odd behaviours, like holy laughter.

Those who promote being drunk in the Spirit point to Acts 2:13 as justification for their teaching and claim these strange behaviours are “proof” of the work of the Holy Spirit.

BUT: If we contrast the work of the Holy Spirit in giving them the miraculous ability to speak in multiple different languages, with what we know about being drunk, I think we can see quite clearly, they were not drunk.  

  • Order and Control

What is the fruit of the Holy Spirit? Galatians 5:23. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and ………………self-control.

This outpouring of the Holy Spirit was controlled, not the lack of control we see in the actions and language of a drunk person.

  • Constructive and Productive


Ephesians 5 18 is also translated as “And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess”.

Prodigal Son Drunkenness leads to excess, to extravagance, to indulgence and to wastefulness. A picture that emerges here is that of the prodigal son. He squandered his money and he squandered his time – nothing came of it, he had nothing to show. 

I once saw a T-shirt with the slogan “Caution – Hangover under Construction”.

That’s about it – that’s is all that being excessively drunk on alcohol will construct.

  • Stimulating and Motivating

Another point of difference is the Holy Spirt fills us with energy and excitement, He motivates us to get up and go!

Alcohol does not. Some may think it is a stimulant, but it is not – it is a depressant.

The work of the Holy Spirit is active, positive and stimulating, it motivates to action.

  • Joy and Unity

We have already talked at length about the unity within the group, the agreement, the one accord. There was harmony.

Again, the fruit of the Spirit is joy and peace.

Yet some folk turn to alcohol as a source of happiness – but as we have seen, it is a depressant. 

  1. What DOES this mean?

 When the crowd recognised that something supernatural had taken place, they wanted an explanation – “What does this mean?”.

Before I go any further, I want to reiterate and agree with what Ross said 2 weeks ago. There are many theological positions on this matter all of which can be supported biblically. What I offer you today is a view on what is the Baptism in the Holy Spirit.

An important verse in understanding the filling of the Holy Spirit is John 14:16,

15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.

Here Jesus promised the Spirit would indwell believers and that this indwelling would be permanent. It is important to distinguish the indwelling from the filling (or baptism) of the Spirit.

The indwelling of the Spirit is:

  • Given at the moment of salvation (Ephesians 1:13)
  • For all believers, not a select few ( Galatians 3:2)
  • Not conditional, except faith in Christ (John 7:37-39)
  • Given permanently (Ephesians 4:30)
  • Developing as we continue to surrender all of our self to the Holy Spirit
  • In that sense – is self-controlled.


Self-controlled in that sin is what hinders the filling of the Holy Spirit. Obedience to God is how the filling of the Spirit is maintained. Because we are still infected with sin, it is impossible to be filled with the Spirit all of the time. When we sin, we should immediately confess it to God and renew our commitment to being Spirit-filled and Spirit-led.

When we are living in this way, we are open to the Baptism of the Spirit, which:

  • Fills us completely so we are saturated by the Spirit.
  • Gives the full power and authority of the Spirit
  • Given for a specific purpose
  • In that sense, is God-controlled.


After the Holy Spirit came upon them at Pentecost, we read of numerous later occasions in Acts where they were again “filled by the Spirit”.

In each of these instances, they had already been born in the Spirit, but then they were filled to the brim, baptised by the Spirit, empowered and enabled to accomplish something, awesome, spectacular for the glory of God.



We should not grieve (Ephesians 4:30) nor quench (1 Thessalonians 5:19) the Holy Spirit.

When we yield to anything that is opposed to the Spirit, sin, we are not under the control of the Spirit and we grieve him. When we allow our passions and lusts to control us, we are not under the control of the Holy Spirit.

Similarly, because the Holy Spirit is within us stimulating us, giving ideas, producing thoughts or making suggestions, and we refuse or reject them and again, again we are not under the control of the spirit. Every time I say, no wait a minute, I need to do this or that, I grieve the Spirit.

When we allow this to happen, we do not experience the fullness of the Spirit’s working and His power in and through us. To be filled with the Spirit implies freedom for Him to occupy every part of our lives, guiding and controlling us. Then His power can be exerted through us so that what we do is fruitful for God.

The analogy Ross has been using is that sometimes our lives are like boats, sitting on the mudflats at Raglan when the tide has gone out. Just sitting there and waiting for the “tide” to come in. Waiting for the Holy Spirit.

I want to extend the Raglan analogy, and ask if we here at Fairfield Baptist are sitting on the mud flats, or is the tide out? Perhaps we are sitting on a neap tide? Or is the tide high?

Never mind high tide – Are you ready for a Raglan Tsunami here at Fairfield?

We do need to be discerning! Being filled with the Spirit or baptised in the Spirit is not some ecstatic or emotionally charged experience – no heavenly high or spiritual spin.

God wants every aspect of our lives as believers to be under the complete control of the Holy Spirit. This does not come by drunkenness, nor does it mimic its effects. 

But we also should not quench the Holy Spirit.

Being filled with the Spirit is a steady submission of all one’s life to the work of the Spirit.

We can be confident to let Him have His way. As we have seen His way is orderly and controlled, it is constructive and productive, it is stimulating and motivating, and it promotes joy and unity.

And as Jesus said, He will remind us of what Jesus said, what He taught us.

If we want to experience the fullness of the Spirit’s power and authority working in and through us we need to surrender those tiny recesses of “ME” and be open to being completely filled with the Spirit. We need to give Him free rein to occupy every part of our lives, guiding and controlling us?

Then His power can be exerted through us so that what we do here at FBC is fruitful for God. We will be His witnesses in Hamilton, and in all Waikato and New Zealand, and to the ends of the earth.

Brothers and sisters – bless you all as you BE READY


Further Study

  1. Paul says that getting drunk is akin to our old way of life with its worldly and self-serving desires. Such behaviour is debased and “leads to debauchery”. Compare Colossians 1:21 and Romans 13:13. What should the Christian life look like? Discuss. In what ways do you think God would have you change your own way of living?
  2. When the crowd recognised that something supernatural had taken place, they wanted an explanation – “What does this mean?”.

This should be the pattern in our lives as well. What is different in your life? What evidence would cause someone to stop you and ask “What does this mean?”

Are we living our lives in such a way that people see Christ in us? Do we shine and sparkle (Mat 5.14; Phil 2.15) are we “salty” (Mat 5.13).

  1. Read 1 Kings chapter 19. In what ways does God speak to us? Elijah needed a message from God – first came a great wind, then an earthquake and finally a fire. But God’s message came in a “gentle whisper”. How can we better prepare ourselves to ensure we “hear” God when he speaks to us?
  2. In what ways can you see that the work of the Holy Spirit is active, positive and stimulating? How does He motivate you to action? Read Exodus 3. How did God use Bezaleel? How might God be wanting to use you going forward?