Introduction: Would you like the Holy Spirit to come in power into
your life? How about coming in power to your church? Our lesson
today is about the fulfillment of the promise that Jesus made to His
disciples of the gift of the Holy Spirit. How did they get ready for
Him? How did the Holy Spirit come? Let’s dive into our study and find

  1. Ready for the Gift?

    1. Read Acts 1:3-5. Was anything required of the disciples in
      order to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit?

      1. If so, what preparation do you find in Acts 1:3? (At
        a very fundamental level you have to believe that
        Jesus is the Messiah who died for our sins and who
        was resurrected as proof that He defeated sin and

      2. What preparation do you find in Acts 1:4? (They were
        directed to stay where they were and wait.)

        1. I thought waiting was a pain in the neck. Could
          it be preparation for something?

    2. Read Acts 1:12-14. What did they do while they were
      waiting? (They were in constant prayer.)

      1. What should we conclude about prayer and preparation
        for the gift of the Holy Spirit?

      2. What do you think they were praying about?

      3. Notice a “life” tip here. Because I travel in
        connection with my work, I fairly often find myself
        waiting. Waiting is a good time to pray. It turns
        wasted time into productive time.

    3. Notice that in Acts 1:4 & 12 Jesus tells them to wait in
      Jerusalem. Would the right location be a “preparation” for
      receiving the power of the Holy Spirit?

      1. If so, why? (God can have a specific place for us to
        work. Here, Jesus was very clear with the disciples.
        Jesus desired that the gospel be preached first in
        Jerusalem, and then spread from there. Luke 24:46-47.)

    4. In Acts 1:15-26 we read that Peter takes the lead in
      selecting a replacement for Judas. Is this a waste of
      their time, or is organization part of the preparation for
      the coming of the Holy Spirit in power? (This shows that
      organization is important.)

    5. Let’s review. In preparation for the great gift of the
      Holy Spirit we find that Jesus leads in the following

      1. Conversion of the heart to believe Jesus is the risen

      2. Following the directions of Jesus as to the location
        of the work;

      3. Prayer while waiting on God; and,

      4. Organization for work.

    6. Before we leave this area, let’s look at one important
      footnote. Read Acts 1:6. What is not required for the gift
      of the Holy Spirit? (Perfect theology. Perfect
      understanding of the mission. We sometimes look at fellow
      Christian believers and refuse to join in their work
      because their theology is not “up” to our exalted
      standards. This is not how we see the Holy Spirit working.
      The disciples obviously had some fundamental
      misunderstandings. That was one reason they needed the
      outpouring of the Holy Spirit.)

  2. Promise Fulfilled

    1. Read Acts 2:1-4. Were they obedient? (Yes, they were in
      “one place” as directed.)

      1. What accompanies the Holy Spirit? (Noise, visuals,

        1. Why the sound of a “violent” wind from heaven?
          (Read John 3:6-8. Wind is a common
          representation of the Holy Spirit. See also
          Ezekiel 37:1-10.)

          1. Was it actually a violent wind? (No. Acts
            2:2 says it was a sound “like” the blowing
            of a violent wind. This means it was not
            actually a violent wind, it just sounded
            like it.)

        2. Why do you think tongues of fire came with the
          sound of the wind? (Read Exodus 19:18 and Exodus
          3:2-5. Fire is a common representation of God.)

          1. Was it actually fire that came to rest on
            them? ( Acts 2:3 says it was “what seemed
            to be tongues of fire.”)

    2. According to Acts 2:3-4 how many of those present were
      filled with the Holy Spirit? (All of them.)

    3. We discussed last week the idea of the Holy Spirit coming
      after Jesus left. Some pointed out that the Holy Spirit
      was already present. What does Acts 2:1-3 suggest in
      answer to this question of what it means for the Holy
      Spirit to come? (God has been “with” humans since the very
      beginning. But, there are times in history when God
      manifests Himself in power. The giving of the Ten
      Commandments on Mount Sinai comes to mind. Acts 2 is the
      Holy Spirit coming in power. We can see times when God
      wants there to be no doubt about when He is present and
      ready for business!)

    4. Read Acts 2:5-6. My mental picture of this event is Peter
      standing up in some public arena explaining what is
      happening. But, Acts 2:2 tells us that they were in a
      “house.” How loud was this sound like a violent wind? (It
      sounds like you could hear it a long way off, if not
      throughout Jerusalem!)

    5. Let’s look at Acts 2:4-8 to understand the nature of the
      manifestation of the Holy Spirit. What was the purpose of
      the gift of the Holy Spirit? (Last week we discussed the
      fabulous miracles that came with the power of the Holy
      Spirit. I think it is significant that the first work of
      the Holy Spirit when He came in power was to help the
      believers better communicate the gospel.)

    6. Review again Acts 1:4-8. Recall that the disciples were
      looking for the power of God to give them authority and
      glory in the physical realm. Jesus told them that He would
      give them power to be witnesses. Friend, will you pray
      that the Holy Spirit will come on you in power to be a
      better witness?

    7. There is, to my mind, a significant debate about what it
      meant to have the gift of tongues in the early church.
      What does Acts 2:7-11 reveal is the gift of tongues? (The
      description of this event is very clear: the gift of
      tongues was the ability to speak in foreign languages.)

      1. Why was that gift important for witnesses of the
        gospel? (Read again Acts 2:5. Assembled in Jerusalem
        were Jews from every nation. This is the perfect way
        to begin to spread the gospel of Jesus, the
        resurrected Messiah.)

      2. Would a gift of incoherent language promote the
        gospel? (I’m far from sure that the “tongues … of
        angels” ( 1 Corinthians 13:1) is a foreign language.
        But, what logic is there in being given the gift of a
        language which cannot be understood? The power is to
        used to witness. Speaking a language no one
        understands seems an odd witness. See, 1 Corinthians

    8. Read Acts 2:13-16. When the Holy Spirit comes in power in
      your life, will there be doubters?

      1. Did the criticism make sense? (Peter not only attacks
        the logic of the criticism, but he uses the Bible
        (Joel 2) to show this is a fulfillment of prophecy.)

  3. The Message

    1. Read Acts 2:22-24. What is the message of the Holy

      1. Recall what we discussed were the steps to prepare
        for the Holy Spirit coming in power? How does this
        message relate to the preparation? (The first step
        was conversion of the heart to believe Jesus is the
        Messiah. We see that this is the prime message of
        those powered by the Holy Spirit.)

    2. Read Acts 2:37. What is the response to hearing a Spirit-filled message? (Repentance.)

    3. Friend, would you like to have the power of the Holy
      Spirit in your life? Pray today for the gift to be a
      powerful, Spirit-filled witness.

  1. Next week: The Baptism of the Holy Spirit.