Today is Pentecost.
Just hearing that word makes some of us Baptists nervous! Perish the thought of being “accused” of being a Pentecostal. Yikes!
Forbid it, Lord, that I should actually be MOVED by the Holy Ghost! Oh, no… we don’t do that. It is strictly forbidden to show any emotion.
Now, to clarify, I’m being sarcastic. We’ve changed our schedule this month to help us focus on congregational singing, and I am quite okay with God moving during a song service. Let Him!
Let the TRUTH of the music move you. I believe our greatest distinction is that we believe the TRUTH is far more moving than the HYPE.
But you’d be hard pressed to make that a convincing argument if God’s people were never moved by the truths of the song. If you sing “Abide with Me” and really mean it… oh, mercy! It’ll be like someone’s cutting onions in here… it brings tears to my eyes when I think about that song.
If it’s just another dull part of the service, we’re really missing the point of singing. This Pentecost, let’s offer up a sacrifice of praise to God.
The original Pentecost was a Jewish holiday, so named because it was fifty (“Pente-“) days after Passover (the 14th day of the first month) and the Feast of Unleavened Bread (the 15th day of the first month.) The Spring holidays were looking forward to what God would provide, and they would wave the very first little growth of their crops in the air before the Lord. It was their offering of firstfruits, and showed that the WHOLE crop was God’s, and they were thankful to Him for providing it.
At Pentecost they would again recognize that by receiving goods from what they had planted earlier in the Spring, it was STILL God’s harvest, with more yet to come.
Pentecost represented the first of a greater harvest, and I don’t think it was an accident that so many people were saved and empowered by the Holy Ghost on that first Pentecost after Jesus’ death and resurrection. We read in Acts 2 about thousands of people being saved and having their lives miraculously changed by the Gospel, and this was the first of many more fruitful harvests to come.
We meet together on Sundays to “Hail the power of Jesus’ name” and sing about the day when we will see Him crowned “Lord of all.” A stanza of that song that is not in our hymnal says:
Sinners, whose love can ne’er forget
the wormwood and the gall, (Lam. 3:19; Matt. 27:34)
go, spread your trophies at his feet, (Rev. 4:10)
and crown him Lord of all.
What a powerful reminder of WHY we sing… because we have been redeemed. The last stanza was added later and summarizes our part in the coronation: “we’ll join the everlasting song, and crown him Lord of all.” –Pastor Ryan