Sunday, May 23, 2021

A Prayer For Pentecost

“Father of light, from whom every good gift comes, send your Spirit into our lives with the power of a mighty wind, and by the flame of your wisdom open the horizons of our minds.

Loosen our tongues to sing your praise in words beyond the power of speech, for without your Spirit we could never raise our voice in words of peace or announce the truth that Jesus is Lord.”

Author Unknown

God’s Appointed Times: Pentecost or the Feast of Weeks

Today is Pentecost Sunday the day we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the church. Pentecost is also referred to in the Bible as the Feast of Weeks, Feast of Harvest, and the Day of Firstfruits {Ex. 23:16Num. 28}. Pentecost falls on the fiftieth day from Passover. It was a one-day feast and celebration {Ex. 23:1634:22Lev. 23:15,22Num. 28}. 

The liturgy for the feast is found in Deuteronomy,

“You shall also count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day when you brought in the sheaf of the wave offering; there shall be seven complete Sabbaths. You shall count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall present a new grain offering to the Lord. You shall bring in from your dwelling places two loaves of bread as a wave offering, made of two-tenths of an ephah; they shall be of fine flour, baked with leaven as first fruits to the Lord. Along with the bread you shall present seven one-year-old male lambs without defect, and a bull of the herd and two rams; they are to be a burnt offering to the Lord, with their grain offering and their drink offerings, an offering by fire of a soothing aroma to the Lord. You shall also offer one male goat as a sin offering, and two male lambs one year old as a sacrifice of peace offerings. The priest shall then wave them with the bread of the first fruits as a wave offering with two lambs before the Lord; they are to be holy to the Lord for the priest. On this very day you shall make a proclamation as well; you are to have a holy convocation. You shall do no laborious work. It is to be a permanent statute in all your dwelling places throughout your generations” {Lev. 23:15-21}.

The Feast of Passover was the beginning of the barley harvest and Pentecost was celebrated during the wheat harvest. The feast was a wave offering to the Lord. It consisted of two loaves baked with leaven. It was made with fine flour that was sifted in order to separate the chaff from the wheat. The wave offering was a way for the Hebrews to exhibit their dependence on God, not only for the harvest but also for their daily bread, an offering of thanksgiving.

This is of course the first Pentecost, a foreshadow of the Pentecost in the New Testament. God gave Moses the law on Mt. Sinai written on tablets of stone. Yet there was a promise from the Lord of a future time when the law would be written on the tablets of the heart {Jer. 31:31–34}. For thousands of years, people journeyed to Jerusalem to celebrate Pentecost awaiting the promise of God. 

The Feast of Pentecost was fulfilled in Jesus when He was glorified in the resurrection and seated on the throne at the right hand of the Father. He sent the promised Helper, the Holy Spirit in the upper room to the disciples on the Day of Pentecost which was the fulfillment of God’s promise. Through the Holy Spirit, the Father wrote His precepts on the hearts of all who placed their faith in Christ. He does this still today for all who come to faith in Christ.


In John’s gospel account Jesus speaks and reveals how He fulfills this feast: “But Jesus answered them by saying, ‘The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. Truly, truly I say to you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit’” {Jn. 12:23–24}. Jesus is the seed of grain that died for our sin. He is the Bread from Heaven made with fine flour; perfect righteousness. 

The feast of Pentecost marked the fifty days between Passover  and Pentecost, the New Testament Pentecost was fifty days from Jesus’ resurrection to the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the one hundred and twenty in the upper room. 

There is so much more to say concerning the symbolism, types, and fulfillment in Christ concerning the Feast of Pentecost, but this is sufficient for now. I will write more in the future concerning God’s Appointed Times because they so beautifully speak to the life, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus our precious Savior.  

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