What Is Pentecost?
Many denominations trace their roots back to either a formation through a council or to some great historic character. But the roots of true Christianity are really found in the second chapter of the book of Acts. Acts is the historical record of the early church. It chronicles the practical application of the teachings of the Gospels. It in the second chapter of this book that the church was born. The power that birthed the church was the outpouring of God's Spirit (the Holy Ghost) on the day of Pentecost. Pentecost was a Jewish festival celebrated 50 days after the feast of Passover. Pentecost was a feast celebrating the harvest, an appropriate time for God to unleash the greatest harvest of all... the harvest of souls.
The apostles and other followers were gathered together on this day in unity and prayer (120 of them). God's spirit was poured out upon all of them, and they began to give the universal sign of being infilled with God's spirit... speaking in an unknown tongue. The Holy Ghost brought such great joy that soon a crowd was gathered in the square below. Peter stepped forth to address them, and the body of his powerful message is recorded in Acts 2. At the conclusion of his message conviction gripped the crowd, and in agony they cried out with the universal question: "how can we be saved?"
Peter's simple response encapsulated the message of the gospel. Acts 2:38-39 KJV Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. (39) For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call. Many have asked this same question since, but not all have received this answer.
At Emmanuel Lighthouse, we celebrate both the birth of the church and also the outpouring of God's Spirit. Our purpose is to continue the work of Jesus Christ that was birthed with the very first Christian Church. We still believe this Pentecostal message and celebrate the power of Pentecost in each of our services. The wonder of Pentecost is still occurring on a daily basis, as God gives His people not only the power of salvation, but also the power to witness and minister for His kingdom. We call ourselves Pentecostal because we identify with this original experience. We call ouselves Apostolic, for like the early church, we are continuing in the Apostle's doctrine. (Acts 2:42) This is the genuine experience...just like the Bible says!