The Feast of Pentecost as a prophetic “marker”

mosestablets

Moses and the Tablets of the Law

by Doug Lawrence

The wind and fire of the Holy Spirit hovered powerfully over Mount Sinai – where Moses had remained for the last 40 days and nights.

The Children of Israel concluded that no man could survive such an event, so they assumed Moses had died, and promptly returned to their old Egyptian ways, coercing Moses’ brother Aaron to make for them an idol – the infamous “Golden Calf”.

Much to everyone’s surprise, Moses shortly turned up alive – complete with the stone tablets of the Law, which God himself had written. Other details aside, the Children of Israel had now become the People of the Mosaic Covenant – and the Law.

It was Pentecost, about 1450 B.C.
The “vehicle” of our salvation
now had a set of “training wheels”
and a “road map”!

* * * *

prophetjeremiah

The Prophet Jeremiah

Almost a thousand years passed, and the Israelites had once again succumbed to idolatry. This time it wasn’t a golden calf – but rather, the false gods of their neighbors – and they were totally unwilling to repent.

The Prophet Jeremiah was sent to help get them back on track, but they refused to hear him. So God permitted the Babylonians to come in, sack Jerusalem, and destroy the Temple.

The Babylonians carried off the Temple furnishings, sacred vessels and the surviving Israelites into Babylonian captivity, where they would remain for a time, until the Babylonians themselves were conquered by the Persians.

It was Pentecost, about 586 B.C.
The remnant of the Children of Israel

weren’t quite sure where things were going from here,
but it wasn’t looking very good!

* * * *

cyrusrestores

King Cyrus Returns the Sacred Vessels

King Cyrus of Persia – the new ruler of the former Babylonian Empire – was suddenly “moved” by the Holy Spirit – deciding to permit the Israelites to return to Jerusalem, so they could rebuild both the city and the Temple.

Cyrus also financed the entire operation – as well as restoring to the Israelites all of the plundered Temple furnishings and sacred vessels – so everything might be ready for the arrival of the coming Messiah.

The sacred scriptures are not clear
about the exact day this particular event occurred, 

but based on the context, I’m going to estimate the date
as the Day of 
Pentecost, around 539 B.C.
and things were definitely looking up!

* * * *

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The First Christian Pentecost

The Risen Christ had bodily ascended to Heaven ten days earlier. Mary and the Apostles were gathered in the upper room of the Jerusalem Cenacle – the same place that Jesus had earlier instituted the New Covenant in his blood – at the Last Supper – and the place where the New Covenant (Catholic) Church would soon be born.

All were fervently waiting and praying for the descent of the Holy Spirit – and the “power” Jesus had promised to them. Inside, it sounded like wind and thunder – soon to be complemented by descending “tongues” of fire. To those in the streets, it would have looked more like a reenactment of the supernatural events that took place above Mount Sinai, almost 1500 years earlier – which it was!

Since this was in fact, 50 days after Passover (technically, the Feast of First Fruits, some three days after) – in the Hebrew, Shavuot – in the Greek, Pentecost – the day when all observant Jews come to Jerusalem, specifically to celebrate Moses’ reception of the Tablets of the Law, from God – something like this would not have gone unnoticed.

Then the apostles came out into the street to explain.

Acts 2:5-12 Now there were dwelling at Jerusalem, Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. (6) And when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded in mind, because that every man heard them speak in his own tongue. (7) And they were all amazed, and wondered, saying: Behold, are not all these that speak Galilean? (8) And how have we heard, every man our own tongue wherein we were born? (9) Parthians and Medes and Elamites and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, (10) Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome, (11) Jews also, and proselytes, Cretes, and Arabians: we have heard them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God. (12) And they were all astonished, and wondered, saying one to another: What meaneth this?

It was the Day of the first Christian Pentecost, about 33 A.D.
Salvation had come to the world,
and the world rejected him.

Salvation had been killed, and had risen again.
But Salvation would not be denied,
so all the promises of Jesus Christ were duly fulfilled. 

* * * *

jerencircled

Titus’ Siege of Jerusalem

While he still walked the earth, Jesus had sternly cautioned them:

Mark 13:1-2 And as he was going out of the temple, one of his disciples said to him: Master, behold what manner of stones and what buildings are here. (2) And Jesus answering, said to him: Seest thou all these great buildings? There shall not be left a stone upon a stone, that shall not be thrown down.

The Roman General Titus and his legions had nearly encircled the city of Jerusalem – but they inexplicably stopped short – for one whole day.

Those “in the know” – mostly Christians – took good advantage of the reprieve – hastily abandoning the city – much as Lot had narrowly escaped the sudden destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.

But now it was Sunday, the encirclement was complete and the siege was on. Over the next six months – apparently just in time for the fall Feast of Tabernacles – the Temple would be burned to the ground and totally destroyed, hundreds and thousands of Jews would be killed, the sacred Temple vessels would once again be carried off, and Jerusalem would never be the same.

The siege began on Pentecost, 70 A.D.
Many of those who walked with Jesus Christ
“this generation” – 
Mark 13:30
were still alive to witness the events.

It marked the definitive end
of the Jewish Temple Worship System,
and the budding Church would now reach out

in the name of Jesus, not just to the Jews,
but to the whole world.

Within the span of some 500 years,
against all odds, the Roman Empire,
along with most of the known world,
would be converted to Christianity.

When the Roman Empire eventually fell,
The Catholic Church would be there
to rebuild Western Civilization,
in the image of Heaven.

* * * *

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Jesus Christ at the Second Coming
(Image: Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception)

Revelation 10:5-7 And the angel whom I saw standing upon the sea and upon the earth lifted up his hand to heaven. (6) And he swore by him that liveth for ever and ever, who created heaven and the things which are therein, and the earth and the things which are in it, and the sea and the things which are therein: That time shall be no longer. (7) But in the days of the voice of the seventh angel, when he shall begin to sound the trumpet, the mystery of God shall be finished, as he hath declared by his servants the prophets.

No one except God the Father knows the day or the hour Jesus will finally and triumphantly return – so I don’t intend to even try to set any kind of date – but based on all of the above – and the fact that – according to the Bible – the last 6 months of the 42-month final tribulation period is where most of the major “action” is – I offer the following, for your consideration:

The “Grand finale” of the “End of the Age” will likely begin on Pentecost and continue for six months – right up to the time of the old Feast of Tabernacles – which according to the old calendar – is also when Jesus Christ arrived here on earth – the first time – as a helpless infant.

From the looks of the above picture – and the account in the Book of Revelation – Jesus will not be coming back like that, again.   Instead, he will come again in power and  glory – to render judgment for sin – and things will go something like this:

Revelation 19:11-16 And I saw heaven opened: and behold a white horse. And he that sat upon him was called faithful and true: and with justice doth he judge and fight. (12) And his eyes were as a flame of fire: and on his head were many diadems. And he had a name written, which no man knoweth but himself. (13) And he was clothed with a garment sprinkled with blood. And his name is called: THE WORD OF GOD. (14) And the armies that are in heaven followed him on white horses, clothed in fine linen, white and clean. (15) And out of his mouth proceedeth a sharp two-edged sword, that with it he may strike the nations. And he shall rule them with a rod of iron: and he treadeth the winepress of the fierceness of the wrath of God the Almighty. (16) And he hath on his garment and on his thigh written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.

Revelation 22:12-13 Behold, I come quickly: and my reward is with me, to render to every, man according to his works. (13) I am Alpha and Omega, the First and the Last, the Beginning and the End. 

Related Link

Pentecost and authentically speaking in tongues (languages)

It is quite unfortunate that, in modern English-speaking cultures, the etymological link between “tongue” and “language” has been largely forgotten. Any who know the history of the word “language” will recognize the Latin root lingua by way of the Old French langage. Lingua is Latin for both “tongue” and “language, speech” (hence the modern English word, “lingual” as in “of the tongue”).

Hence, the charism “speaking in tongues” may just as easily be called “speaking in languages” – and this is the clear sense given in the Scriptures. By this gift of the Holy Spirit, the apostles and others were able to speak in languages which they did not know. Through this speech, the early Christian missionaries spread the faith to foreign lands with greater ease.

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What is the gospel of Jesus Christ?

Q: What is the gospel of Jesus Christ?

A: The most succint description of the “Good News” can be found here, in the Acts of the Apostles:

Act 2:1 And when the days of the Pentecost were accomplished, they were all together in one place:
Act 2:2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a mighty wind coming: and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
Act 2:3 And there appeared to them parted tongues, as it were of fire: and it sat upon every one of them.
Act 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost: and they began to speak with divers tongues, according as the Holy Ghost gave them to speak.
Act 2:5 Now there were dwelling at Jerusalem, Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven.
Act 2:6 And when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded in mind, because that every man heard them speak in his own tongue.
Act 2:7 And they were all amazed, and wondered, saying: Behold, are not all these that speak Galilean?
Act 2:8 And how have we heard, every man our own tongue wherein we were born?
Act 2:9 Parthians and Medes and Elamites and inhabitants of Mesopotamia, Judea, and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,
Act 2:10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya about Cyrene, and strangers of Rome,
Act 2:11 Jews also, and proselytes, Cretes, and Arabians: we have heard them speak in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.
Act 2:12 And they were all astonished, and wondered, saying one to another: What meaneth this?
Act 2:13 But others mocking, said: These men are full of new wine.
Act 2:14 But Peter standing up with the eleven, lifted up his voice, and spoke to them: Ye men of Judea, and all you that dwell in Jerusalem, be this known to you and with your ears receive my words.
Act 2:15 For these are not drunk, as you suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day:
Act 2:16 But this is that which was spoken of by the prophet Joel:
Act 2:17 And it shall come to pass, in the last days, (saith the Lord), I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy: and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.
Act 2:18 And upon my servants indeed and upon my handmaids will I pour out in those days of my spirit: and they shall prophesy.
Act 2:19 And I will shew wonders in the heaven above, and signs on the earth beneath: blood and fire, and vapour of smoke.
Act 2:20 The sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the great and manifest day of the Lord to come.
Act 2:21 And it shalt come to pass, that whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Act 2:22 Ye men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him, in the midst of you, as you also know:
Act 2:23 This same being delivered up, by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you by the hands of wicked men have crucified and slain.
Act 2:24 Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the sorrows of hell, as it was impossible that he should be holden by it.
Act 2:25 For David saith concerning him: I foresaw the Lord before my face: because he is at my right hand, that I may not be moved.
Act 2:26 For this my heart hath been glad, and my tongue hath rejoiced: moreover my flesh also shall rest in hope.
Act 2:27 Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell: nor suffer thy Holy One to see corruption.
Act 2:28 Thou hast made known to me the ways of life: thou shalt make me full of joy with thy countenance.
Act 2:29 Ye men, brethren, let me freely speak to you of the patriarch David: that he died and was buried; and his sepulchre is with us to this present say.
Act 2:30 Whereas therefore he was a prophet and knew that God hath sworn to him with an oath, that of the fruit of his loins one should sit upon his throne.
Act 2:31 Foreseeing this, he spoke of the resurrection of Christ. For neither was he left in hell: neither did his flesh see corruption.
Act 2:32 This Jesus hath God raised again, whereof all we are witnesses.
Act 2:33 Being exalted therefore by the right hand of God and having received of the Father the promise of the Holy Ghost, he hath poured forth this which you see and hear.
Act 2:34 For David ascended not into heaven; but he himself said: The Lord said to my Lord: Sit thou on my right hand,
Act 2:35 Until I make thy enemies thy footstool.
Act 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know most certainly that God hath made both Lord and Christ, this same Jesus, whom you have crucified.
Act 2:37 Now when they had heard these things, they had compunction in their heart and said to Peter and to the rest of the apostles: What shall we do, men and brethren?
Act 2:38 But Peter said to them: Do penance: and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of your sins. And you shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
Act 2:39 For the promise is to you and to your children and to all that are far off, whomsoever the Lord our God shall call.
Act 2:40 And with very many other words did he testify and exhort them, saying: Save yourselves from this perverse generation.
Act 2:41 They therefore that received his word were baptized: and there were added in that day about three thousand souls.
Act 2:42 And they were persevering in the doctrine of the apostles and in the communication of the breaking of bread and in prayers.
Act 2:43 And fear came upon every soul. Many wonders also and signs were done by the apostles in Jerusalem: and there was great fervor in all.
Act 2:44 And all they that believed were together and had all things common.
Act 2:45 Their possessions and goods they sold and divided them to all, according as every one had need.
Act 2:46 And continuing daily with one accord in the temple and breaking bread from house to house, they took their meat with gladness and simplicity of heart:
Act 2:47 Praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord increased daily together such as should be saved.