…And The Holy Spirit Air-Dropped In
If I were to make a movie on the Acts of the Apostles, I’d skip the first chapter (save it for flash-back) and spend the opening five minutes (that first gripping moment) on the next two sentences:
When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a noise like a violent rushing wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting.
Yes. A brief, calm collecting of all the people into a house, and then a full five minutes of a noise like violent rushing wind filling that house. I’d crank the scene and sound to an overwhelming roar and then, when the audience is fully confused as to why the disciples are not terrified but joyful, I’d grab the perspective of the seemingly most insignificant character, perhaps a small boy or girl we’ve seen carrying a bucket of water, as he or she stumbles through the house from bottom to top, gaping at the next sentence:
And there appeared to them tongues as of fire distributing themselves, and they rested on each one of them.
And then, after seeing all these flames resting on the heads of adults, an adult would point at the child and the child would reach above its own head, touch the flame, and instantly words would pop out of this child’s mouth in another language as…
And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit was giving them utterance.
At this point there must also be laughter. Joy bursts forth on every face. Tears of joy. Hands raised in praise. Dancing. Shouting. The film must somehow convey that the people understand they are not only in the presence of the living God, but He is within them!
Once this scene has transitioned the audience from “that would terrify me” to “I wish I had been there,” the camera answers the door to find outsiders running through the city to get to this house.
Now there were Jews living in Jerusalem, devout men from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the crowd came together, and were bewildered because each one of them was hearing them speak in his own language. They were amazed and astonished, saying,
“Why, are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we each hear them in our own language to which we were born? …
we hear them in our own tongues speaking of the mighty deeds of God.”
And they all continued in amazement and great perplexity, saying to one another, “What does this mean?”
But others were mocking and saying, “They are full of sweet wine.”
I wouldn’t spend much time on the mockers. But I’d make it a point to have Peter so far away from the comment that one would have to conclude that just as Jesus supernaturally knew what men were thinking in their hearts, the Holy Spirit has supernaturally given Peter the knowledge of what was being said on the fringe and Peter addresses it before the men dismiss this act of God and walk away — because God cares so much for them that He wants to draw them back to Himself. Those who were about to leave, turn around when Peter…
But Peter, taking his stand with the eleven, raised his voice and declared to them:
“Men of Judea and all you who live in Jerusalem, let this be known to you and give heed to my words. For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, for it is only the third hour of the day; but this is what was spoken of through the prophet Joel:
‘And it shall be in the last days,’ God says, ‘that I will pour forth of My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams; even on My bondslaves, both men and women, I will in those days pour forth of My Spirit and they shall prophesy.
And I will grant wonders in the sky above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire, and vapor of smoke.
The sun will be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before the great and glorious day of the Lord shall come.
And it shall be that everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’
Camera cuts to a flashback of Jesus in the boat, performing the miracle of fish, and Peter falling down before Him, saying, “Depart from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man.”
And Jesus answers, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.”