A new season in the Christian calendar begins on May 24, Pentecost Sunday. The word Pentecost comes from the Greek, Pentekoste, the 50th day after the Sabbath of Passover week (Leviticus 13:15-16). Originally, Pentecost was the occasion on which faithful Jews gathered to celebrate The Feast of Weeks (Deuteronomy 16:9-12), an annual Jewish festival at which first fruits were offered to God. On the Pentecost following Jesus’ death, resurrection, and ascension, the book of Acts tells us that tongues of fire rested on the believers and they were filled with the Holy Spirit (2:1-4).
Emboldened by the power of the Holy Spirit, the disciples began to proclaim the gospel message that resulted in a harvest of new believers from many nations. Thus, Pentecost is often referred to as the “birthday” of the church. Pentecost and the following Sundays through November comprise the season of Pentecost. The appropriate liturgical color for Pentecost is red (like fire) that symbolizes the presence of God and His power that is available to all who believe in him. Pentecost is a powerful reminder that we are called to carry the love and truth of God into the world, not in our own strength, but by the power of God’s Holy Spirit dwelling within us and working through us. In the spirit of Pentecost, may we renew our effort here at Cross Keys to go into the world and to make disciples of all nations in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit (Matthew 28:19).