Acts: Jesus at Work through the Church – Part 2

Acts 2:1-13, 42-47

Acts: Jesus at Work through the Church – Part 2

Jerusalem, Part 1 – A Different Kind of Temple

I. The GIFT that was coming ARRIVES. (1:4-5, 2:1-13)
A. Sound of WIND and sight of FIRE. (v.2-3)
B. They are FILLED with the SPIRIT. (v.4; 1:5)
C. They are WITNESSES to the WONDERS of God. (1:8; v.4,11)
D. The WHOLE world HEARS. (v.7-11)

Last week we saw Jesus tell the disciples to wait in Jerusalem until they received the gift from the Father. This week we see the arrival of that gift…the Holy Spirit. It’s quite a spectacle what happened on that first day of Pentecost.

1. Kid’s Question: Have you ever been in a powerful storm? What was that experience like? What might it have been like to be in the room on Pentecost?
2. When you think of the story of Pentecost, what is the usual direction your thinking goes and what are the usual things you notice about the text?

II. “WHAT does this MEAN?” (v.12 – Hint: A different kind of temple.)
A. Sound of WIND and sight of FIRE. (Ex. 40:33-35; 2 Chr. 7:1-2)
B. They are FILLED with the SPIRIT. (Is. 32:14-15; Ez. 36:26-27; Joel 2:28-29)
C. They are WITNESSES to the WONDERS of God. (Ex.19:6; I Pet. 2:9)
D. The WHOLE world HEARS. (Is. 11:10-11; Is 56:6-7)

All of those events of that first Pentecost are quite unusual. It’s obvious that something was going on. But the events, as unusual as they are, point to something greater. This is no ordinary extraordinary act…this is something that’s been in the making for hundreds of years.

3. Which of the Old Testament teachings about the temple or the coming of the Spirit stand out the most to you in light of Pentecost and why?
4. In your opinion is the Pentecost story more about “temple” or “tongues”? Is that different than what you have seen or thought in past?

III. What HAPPENS through an EMBODIED temple. (v.4,11,42-47)
A. Devotion: Their LIVES are RE-ORIENTED. (v.42-47; Mt. 16:24)
B. Proclamation: In their WORDS and ACTIONS. (v.4,11,42-46; I Pet. 2:4-5)
C. Attraction: OTHERS are DRAWN to Jesus. (v.47; Jn 12:32)

After Pentecost every thing is different. God is in His people…living through them. The temple isn’t brick and mortar, it’s flesh and blood. The vehicle through which God will impact the whole world. We see in their example what happens through an embodied temple…which points out to us our calling as well.

5. In what ways has Jesus “re-oriented” your life?
6. How does the description of the early church in Acts 2:42-47 challenge the way we live out church today?

IV. LIVING as the TEMPLE means… (1 Cor. 6:19)
A. We live EMPOWERED by the SPIRIT. (1:8; 2:4,47; Gal. 2:20)
B. We are UNITED into a diverse WHOLE. (2:42-45; Rom. 12:5)
C. All of life revolves around a DEEPER PURPOSE. (2:42; Eph 1:9-10; 3:8-11)
D. We SPEAK, we LIVE, God WORKS. (1:8; 2:42-47; 1 Cor. 3:6-7)

The temple keeps on moving in the would today through you and me and all the followers of Jesus. The Spirit takes up residence in our lives and joins us together to be the place where God lives in the world. What does that look like in practical terms? I’m glad you asked.

7. What does it actually look like to be “united into a diverse whole”? How are we doing at that? Where could we do better?
8. What is God saying to you today through this passage, and how will you respond in the coming week?