Pentecost Revisited

Pentecost Revisited-2

Let’s revisit Pentecost. In previous discourse we established that Pentecost itself was not a New Testament event. The word “Pentecost” is the Greek derivative for Feast of Weeks, or harvest festival. Pentecost means fifty, and commemorated the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai fifty days after the Exodus. The feast of Pentecost is still celebrated in Judaism as Shavuot. The baptism of the Holy Spirit took place ON THE DAY of (celebration of) Pentecost. It is not Pentecost. If an event takes place on Labour Day, we won’t call it Labour Day. Labour Day is just calendric. Same with Pentecost.

The New Testament actually began on that very day Pentecost was being celebrated. It was the birth of the Church. Technically speaking, the Gospels of Mathew, Mark, Luke and John are not really New Testament. The New Testament began in Acts chapter 2, when the Holy Spirit took over as soul administrator. It was important that the New Testament began on the very day the giving of the Law of Moses was celebrated. If it began on the next day, it would signify that the Old Testament rounded up and handed over to the New Testament. Rather, the New Testament layered itself on the anniversary of the commencement of the Law of Moses. This signified that the New Testament was overwriting the Old Testament as a mark of superiority. The Old Testament was but types and shadows – prefigurations of and pointers to Christ.

On the “Day of Pentecost” all the believers were meeting together in one place – the Upper Room or Cenacle. And suddenly, there was a sound from Heaven like the roaring of a mighty windstorm. The sound filled the house. Then, what looked like tongues of fire settled on each disciple present. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. And they began to speak in tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance or ability. It is to be noted that this anointing at Pentecost was not just on the “Twelve Disciples” but on everyone. We don’t have the exact number of people who got baptized at Pentecost. But we do know they could not be less than 120 if we reference Acts 1:15. “During this time, when about 120 believers were together in one place, Peter stood up…”

The point being made is that the anointing that was on the Apostles was the very same anointing on the laity. God did not discriminate this anointing. The same tongues of fire appeared on ALL. It is therefore an error to imagine that the “anointing” on the clergy is different from the anointing on the congregants. You ARE as anointed as your pastor. You have the SAME anointing. That’s New Testament reality and truth. However the Pastor and others called into ministry is gifted by God to function in certain capacities. Paul enjoined Timothy to fan into flame THE GIFT of God in him (2 Timothy 1:6). “And the special gift of ministry you received when I laid hands on you and prayed – keep that ablaze” 2 Timothy1:6 MSG. ALL CHRISTIANS ARE ANOINTED! We must distinguish between the administration of callings from anointing.

The anointing is THE SAME for ALL but the CAPACITATION to function in ministerial office is GIFTEDNESS by the Spirit. The apostle, prophet, evangelist and pastor-teachers are GIFTS to the Church. (They were gifted by God to become gifts): “Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the Church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists and the pastors and teachers.” Ephesians 4:11 NLT.
“And His gifts were varied; He himself appointed and gave men to us, some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers.” Ephesians 4:11 AMP.
“Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the Church, the body of Christ.” (Ephesians 4:12 NLT). The anointing that is on every believer is the same. It is the anointing of Jesus Christ. (Acts 10:38, Luke 3:22, 4:1). Neither can we ask for “double portion of anointing” like they did in the Old Testament.

The notion of “double portion” is an Old Testament principle referring to the rights of the firstborn. In the Law of Moses it is written: ”But he shall acknowledge the firstborn… by giving him a double portion of all that he has” Deuteronomy 21:17.

The concept of “double portion” in the Old Testament is also tied to favour. For instance, because Hannah could not bear children, the Bible says her husband gave her a “double portion” (1 Samuel 1:5). Elisha also asked for a double portion of the spirit that was on Elijah (2 Kings. 2:9). He wanted to be highly favoured. As the first born from the dead, Jesus already has the “double portion.” And he is highly favoured. (Psalm 45:7, Matthew 3:17).
There is no quantum of anointing in the New Testament. You can’t ask for “double portion” of Jesus anointing. And so there is a general misuse of the word “anointing” among Christians. It’s become a Christianese. Even the singing of “Holy Spirit come on me,” is not scriptural as per New Testament. The Spirit is abiding IN YOU. John says because the anointing you received abides in you it will teach you all things. (1 John 2:27). It is interesting that the Holy Spirit did not start a bonfire on the day of Pentecost. Rather he distributed himself on ALL the disciples, signifying the democratization of the Spirit of God. It is God’s intention to empower each Christian as an individual. Every Christian has direct access to God (Hebrews 4:16).

In the Old Testament they needed to consult the prophets like oracles. But the order changed in the New Testament. It is not God’s design that the New Testament saint be dependent on his Pastor like an Ifa priest or witch doctor. The design of God for the New Testament is not a client system. You must do the praying and fasting yourself. The idea that someone can fast on your behalf is a fallacy of ignorance. Defeats the very purpose. There is no power in fasting. It only serves to temper your flesh to make you more spiritually sensitive to God’s instructions. We all have a ministry of reconciliation. We are to do the work of the ministry. (Ephesians 4:12, 2 Corinthians 5:18).

You have a direct mandate from God to speak in tongues, to lay hands on the sick and they will recover (Mark 16:17,18). You can baptize people in the Spirit (Acts 19:6), cast out demons (Mark 16:17). These are New Testament realities.

© Leke Alder |