Pentecost and Related Events

Dr. W. Noble King
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1. The Passover was first observed by the Israelites while they were in Egypt, and commemorated their departure therefrom.  Then fifty days after the Passover, Pentecost in the Old Testament took place on mount Sinai when Jehovah came down in power (Lev.  23:15, 16; Deut. 16:9; Exodus 34:22.) 
2. The slaying of the Paschal lamb in Egypt, and Pentecost in the Old Testament on Mount Sinai are related to the death of Jesus the Christ without the gate, and Pentecost in the New Testament within the gate—fifty days after the death of Jesus the Christ, the Holy Spirit came upon the waiting group within the city. 
3. Pentecost in the Old Testament was on a first day; Jesus arose from the dead on a first day; the first six appearances of Jesus after he arose are said to have been on the first day, although not on the same first day. The Holy Spirit fell on the waiting group on a first day. This first day constituted the birthday of the Christian Church. The Apostles and early believers themselves observed the first day (Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:2; Rev. 1:10) 

(1) This correlation of cognate scriptural texts is the Biblical way of establishing great doctrines. No basic doctrine can rest on a parable, an inference, an accompaniment, or an isolated text. Indeed those are the very methods employed by errorists in establishing errors. For example Arianism (John 14:28--"…for my Father is greater than I"); Calvinism (John 10:29--"no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand"); soul sleep (John 11:11b "our friend Lazarus sleepeth"); annihilationism (Matthew 13:40a—"…the tares are gathered together and burned in the fire"). 
(2) Jesus set a classic example for us during his temptation in the wilderness (Matt.  4:1-11). Three times the devil quoted scripture to establish a position. Three time Jesus quoted another verse over against the verse quoted by the devil. This added verse, on all three occasions changed the doctrinal position entirely.  We are to follow his example.
4. Now, Pentecost was a fuller revelation of the person and activity of the Holy Spirit. He was here before, and acting; but now he takes over as dispensational Head, and Executive of the Trinity. His personal descent upon them and indwelling within them constitutes the baptism with the Holy Ghost. Our task here is to observe the Biblically stated evidences of that baptism. In doing so, we must dispense with parabolic evidence, inferences, accompaniments, and isolated text-proofs. 
First let us notice that the Bible writers had much to say about evidences—as much as they had to say about the facts evidenced.
1. John said: 
(1) "We know that we have passed from death unto life (1 John 3:14). Life as used here refers to John’s then present experience—the more abundant life. "I am come that ye might have life, and that ye might have it more abundantly" (John 10:10b). 
(2) "And hereby we know that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him" (1 John 319). 
(3) "And by this we do know that we know him" (1 John 2:3). 
(4) "by this know we that we are in him " (1 John 2:5). 
(5) "And hereby we know that we dwell in him and he in us" (1 John 4:13). 
(6) "And hereby we know that he abideth in us (1John 3:24) 
2. Peter said:
(1) "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which… hath begotten us again unto a lively hope" (1 Peter 1:3, 4). 
(2) "And God, which knoweth the hearts, bear them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; and put no difference between us and them" (Acts 15:8, 9a) 
3. Paul said: 
(1) "For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens" (2 Cor. 5:1). 
(2) "And because ye are sons God hath sent forth the spirit of his Son into your hearts" (Gal. 4:6). 
(3) "For our Gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost, and in much assurance (1 Thes.  1:5). 
(4) "Now he that establisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God; who also hath sealed us (2 Cor. 1:21, 22). 
(5) "Grieve not the Holy Spirit whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption" (Eph.  4:30). 
(6) The author of the book of Hebrews says: "Cast not away therefore your confidence which hath great recompense of reward" (Hebrews 10:35). 
Now notice: six times John says that we know; Peter says that we have a lively hope, and the witness; Paul says that we are sealed, and have much assurance; the author of the Hebrews says that we have confidence. Thus we positively do know. Now the way we know must be as positively and clearly stated as is the fact that we do know. We shall return to this later.


Let us now notice ten specific and stated outpourings with the Holy Spirit. In doing so we shall stay close to the New Testament area, although there is no difference between the evidences in the old Testament and the New.
1. "…and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost.  And she spake out with a loud voice" (Luke 1:41b, 42b). 
2. "And his Father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost and prophesied." (Luke 1:67). 
3. John the Baptist was filled with the Holy Ghost, even from birth. We have no record of him speaking in more than one language, and he did no miracle (Luke 1:15). 
4. Jesus himself was anointed with the Holy Spirit without measure. He went up and out to the wilderness to fast, to hunger, and to fight a taunting devil (Matt. 4:1-11). 
5. At Pentecost the apostles and the disciples were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and then spoke in the language of the people then present; the place was shaken; there were visible appearances of fire; they preached with power; many were saved (Acts 2:4-6). 
6. In Acts 19, we are told of a little group who were baptized with the Holy Spirit. They spoke in the languages there and then understood without interpretation.
7. The members of the group gathered at the home of Cornelius were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke in languages there known without interpretation (Acts 10:44-47). 
8. The seven deacons elected by the early church were all Grecian Jews, as evidenced by the Greek names. There is no indication that any of them were at Pentecost proper. The fact that they were Grecians would render that highly improbable. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, but there was no recorded demonstration at all (Acts 6:3). 
9. After the Samaritans had received the word under the preaching of Philip, the Church sent down Peter and John to pray for them. They did so, and they were baptized with the Holy Spirit.  There was no external manifestation at all (Acts 8:15-17). 
10. Paul was saved on the road to Damascus, and later received the Holy Spirit in the house of Judas in Damascus. There are no indications in the record that any external manifestation took place. Later Paul said that he spoke in languages more than them all, meaning acquired languages that he had learned and could speak at any time. In possibly a few minutes Paul spoke four languages in connection with his stairway address—Latin to the centurion, Aramaic to the people, and later Greek and Hebrew (Acts 9:17; 22:2; 21:37).  There is no indication that Paul ever spoke in an unknown tongue. When we demand facts, conjectures must be set aside. Paul did speak in many known languages. This fact must be accepted. 

  (1)  We shall now analyze those ten cases: 

a. In three cases (Pentecost, Cornelius’ home, and at Ephesus) they spoke in known languages, and had no need for interpreters. They were neither unknown tongues nor heavenly languages, but human and earthly languages used in every day speech. 
b. In one case the record informs us that she spake in a loud voice (Elizabeth). 
c. In two cases the record informs us that they prophesied (Zacharias and at Ephesus). 
d. At Pentecost there were sounds as of a rushing wind, visible flames of fire in the upper room (if they were in the upper room). After they came down and a crowd had gathered, there were languages, great power to preach, and many added to the Church. See Acts 2:4b, 6. 
e. After the Holy Spirit came upon Jesus he was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, to meet a taunting and bargaining devil. He also fasted and prayed and hungered, and was ministered to by the angels. 
f. The members of the home of Cornelius magnified God and spake in the common languages of those present.
g. Then in the other four cases mentioned, nothing at all of an external nature happened. 
  (2)  Now let us summarize our findings: 
a. If any one of the accompaniments were an evidence, without which evidence the blessing of the outpoured Spirit could not be claimed, that one evidence would have to appear in all ten cases. 
b. If all accompaniments were evidences, then all accompaniments would have to appear in all ten cases.
c. No one accompaniment appears in all ten, and all accompaniments do not appear in one of the ten cases.  Hence all accompaniments mentioned (and many more not mentioned) shall have to be dispensed with. There is not one statement in the Bible that declares that any one is an evidence. 
  (3)  Mere accompaniments are accidental to the setting, and may in themselves be hindrances rather than evidences: 
a. There were about 120 present at the first Pentecost, possibly in an upper room, in the city of Jerusalem, about nine in the morning. They were probably all Hebrews from Galilee.  At least eleven were ordained. The group was composed of men and women in unknown proportions. Now these accompaniments can never be repeated. 
b. David is said to have been a man after God’s own heart. If an accompaniment is proof then the murder of Uriah and the stealing of Bathsheba would be that proof. 
c. Abraham is said to have been the father of the faithful. The Proof: his marriage to a servant girl after he was already married. 
d. Adam and Eve were made in the image of God. Proof: they ate the forbidden fruit, and became Sinners, and had to be redeemed by the blood of the Christ. An accompaniment, no matter how closely related, proves nothing. 


Let us now return to our starting point, and Observe the Bible stated evidences. Those evidences must be as clearly stated as are the acts that they evidence.
1.  John was a ripe scholar, and a ripe saint of God when he made his written contribution to Holy writ. He had been called by the Christ, had been ordained by Christ, and had pillowed his head on the heart of the Christ. He had seen him, and had heard him, and had handled him before and after the resurrection. He saw the empty tomb, saw him ascend to heaven, and was at Pentecost where a visible flame had rested upon him. He spoke with languages there and then known, and had preached with unction and healed with power. Now John relied on none of those things as evidence of grace, much less as an evidence of the baptism with the Spirit. This is what he said: 
(1) "We know that we have passed from death unto life (the more abundant life) because we love the brethren" (1 John 3:14a).  "He that loveth not his brother abideth in death" (I John 3:14b). This evidence works both ways. A Bible evidence must do this. 
(2) "…let us not love in word, neither in tongue; but in deed and in truth. And hereby we know (if we love in deed and in truth) that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him" (1 John 3:18, 19). 
(3) "And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments" (I John 2:3). John is referring to the commands of the Christ: "A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another" (John 13:34). "This is my commandment, that ye love one another, as I have loved you" (John 15:12). John also refers to perfected love as the old and the new commandment (I John 2:7, 8). The double evidence is again expressed (I John 2:10a, 11a). 
(4) "But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby we know that we are in him" (John 2:5).  The love of God perfected in the heart is it. 
(5) "Hereby we know that we dwell in him, and he in us, because he has given us of his Spirit" (I John 4:13). It is the Spirit with spirit—the Divine and the human within: "He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself " (I John 5:10a). Spiritual reality is not physically evidenced at all, but spiritually. 
(6) "And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us" (I John 3:24b). It is thus an immediate witness within. Perfected love, and the resident Holy Spirit within are John’s evidences.
2.  Peter was also a ripe saint of God before he passed to his eternal home. Peter knew the Christ before and after his resurrection. He was also called and ordained by him to preach the gospel. He was the spokesman for the group before and after Pentecost. He saw Christ ascend to heaven, was at Pentecost, spoke in languages, introduced the new age to Jews and Gentiles alike, preached with power, healed the sick, and raised the dead. Peter, however, relied on none of those things as an evidence. This is, however, what Peter said: 
(1) "And God, which knoweth the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost, even as he did unto us; and put no difference between us and them (now, whatever follows is the witness) purifying their hearts by faith" (Acts 15:8, 9). It is sometimes said that "purifying their hearts by faith" means "having previously purified their hearts by faith and now he gives them the Holy Ghost as a third work." This is not Peter’s meaning.  When Peter made the statement both referred to the past—at Cornelius’ home about twelve years in the past; at Jerusalem about 22 years in the past. Both aspects refer to one work at one time: their hearts were purified when they received the Holy Ghost, and heart purity was the evidence that they received the Holy Ghost. 
(2) The debate was on the savability of the Gentiles. Peter proved that they received the baptism with the Holy Ghost as evidenced by heart purity. The whole Church at Jerusalem accepted that evidence as proof that the Gentiles in Cornelius "home were already saved, Said they; ‘When they heard these things, they held their peace, and glorified God, saying, then hath God also to the Gentiles granted repentance unto life" (Acts 11:18).  The baptism with the Spirit could only be received by saved people. This therefore proved that they were already saved. This is what is meant. The need was the same; the Gift was the same; the evidence was the same – heart purity. The whole New Testament Church accepts heart purity as the evidence of the baptism with the Holy Ghost. 
3.  Paul was the apostle of the gentiles. He too saw the resurrected and glorified Christ, and received special revelations from God. He was caught up into heaven, and preached with power, healed the sick, and raised the dead. He referred to none of those things as an evidence. He did say: 
(1) "And because ye are sons, God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts crying, Abba Father" (Gal. 4:6). This is the Spirit witnessing with the spirit within. 
(2) "Now he that establisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us is God; who hath also sealed us, and given us the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts" (I Cor.  1:21, 22). This is Spirit with spirit again. 
(3) "Grieve not the Holy Spirit of God whereby ye were sealed unto the day of redemption" (Eph. 4:30)" In whom also after that ye believed ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise" (Eph. 1:13).  This is Spirit with spirit again. 
(4) Paul points out that heart purity accompanies this Spirit witness. Romans 6:6—"Knowing this that our old man is crucified with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin." Then in Romans 7:24—"O wretched man that I am! Who shall deliver me from the body of this death?" He is delivered by the baptism with the Spirit: " For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." The evidence of this is the earnest of the Spirit within. 
(5) Paul deliberately throws many false witnesses out of the window in I Cor. 13, and then states a vital one. Read I Cor.  13:1-3, 8, 11, 13. Tongues are out; prophecy out; removing mountains out; self-imposed poverty out: a martyr’s death out; wisdom out. As we leave childhood those things are to be put away. Charity or perfected love in a pure heart alone remains. Along with this put Jesus’ startling statements in Matt.  7:15-23, especially verses 22 and 23 –the prophesiers are out; the casters out of devils are out; the doers of wonderful works are out. They were workers of iniquity, and Jesus never knew them. No physical evidence can give us boldness in the day of judgment; but there is something that can; "God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him. Herein is our love made perfect, That we may have boldness in the day of judgment" (I John 4:16b,17a). God and perfect love in a pure heart are it. 
Thus John, Peter, and Paul are in accord that heart purity, perfected love, the indwelling Spirit are evidences of the baptism with the Spirit.


We now discuss Corinthianism in relation to the baptism with the Holy Spirit. We are not majoring in dealing with error, but, in discussing truth, we find error athwart our path. We shall deal with those errors briefly.
1.  Mere power, and mere demonstration, in the physical realm, are not necessarily evidences of the baptism with the Spirit at all. It is possible that every physical manifestation used by God has been accurately counterfeited by the devil. 
(1) When Moses and Aaron appeared before Pharaoh, God through them, turned a rod into a serpent, water into blood, and brought up frogs. The magicians of Egypt, Jannes and Jambres, turned many rods into serpents, and much water into blood, and also brought up frogs (Exodus 7:11, 12, 21, 22; 8:6, 7; II Tim. 3:8). 
(2) Elijah called fire down from heaven on Mount Carmel (I Kings 18:38). Satan also commanded fire to come down from heaven on Job’s sheep and attending servants (Job 1:16). 
(3) At Pentecost there were "as of a rushing mighty wind" (Acts 2:2). Satan commanded a wind to come from the desert that completely destroyed the family of Job (Job 1:19). 
(4) God inspires and possesses men and women to do his will (II Peter 1:21; II Tim. 3:16). Satan inspired and possessed the Sabeans to destroy the possessions of Job (Job 1:15, 17). The Satan may appear as an angel of light. And operate in the field of religion.  He may perform miracles and lying wonders that "if it were possible the very elect would be deceived." 
2.  Apparent blessing, and physical demonstration are possible in the non-salvation area. 
(1) The little animal upon which Balaam rode was in the non-salvation area, and it spoke with a language foreign to itself and saw visions of God. It was not a candidate for the baptism with the Spirit at all (Numbers 22:28-30) (All it proved was that the ass was still an ass—the ass said so). 
(2) Two young heifers were blessed of God and went dancing and singing down the road as a result of the blessing of God.  They too were in the non-salvation field, and were not candidates for the baptism with the Spirit. 
(3) Parrots can talk clearly and distinctly.  Crows and magpies may talk with a slight operation under their tongue. Those birds are all in the non-salvation field and are not candidates for the baptism with the Spirit. 
3.  Unknown Tongues, or Corinthianism is non-Pentecostal, and heathen or pagan in origin. 
(1) The Hindus spoke in unknown tongues before 1500 or even 2000 BC. The Greeks at Corinth, in their mystery cults, spoke in unknown tongues 700 BC. The Irvinites spoke in unknown tongues. The Mohammedans also speak in unknown tongues. The Mormons use unknown tongues as an evidence of salvation. In short there have been more unknown tongues spoken in non-Christian heathen religions than have appeared in so called Christianity (Cutten, Gearge Barton, Speaking with tongues; New Haven. Yale Univer. Press, 1927; Encys,. Etc.). 
(2) The Languages at Pentecost, at Cornelius’ home, and at Ephesus were not given as evidences of any state of grace in the hearts of those present. They were human and earthly languages given to dispense with interpretation, immediately spread the gospel, and to drive home the great commission (Mark 16:15). They understood the commission to be: "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every (Hebrew) creature."  But it was to every creature lisping every tongue on this planet as evidenced by the gift of languages: "and they sang a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and nation." (Rev. 5:9).  The commission was to all languages, and the redeemed came from all languages. 
(3) Now there are three different kinds of languages referred to in Corinth. Paul, in I Cor., Chapters 12, 13, and 14, deals with them. First, the tongue of the learned (acquired languages) (I Cor. 14;16); second, the common tongue of everyday life (I Cor. 14:19a); third, unknown tongues that only God knew (I Cor. 14:2, 4). The first and second are the same. We shall therefore list the references under two headings: National or acquired—I Cor.  12:10, 28, 30;14:5, 6, 18, 23, 26, 39, Unknown tongues—I Cor. 14:2, 4, 9, 11, 13, 14, 19.
4.  Now notice Paul’s method of dealing with this problem. He must unite the church, and save it for Christ. 
(1) They had tongues at the top of the list of gifts; but Paul gives three list of gifts, and places tongues—known, or unknown—at the bottom of each list (I Cor. 12:8-11; 12:28; 12:29, 30). This was shock number one. 
(2) No physical or external gift was to be sought; hence neither foreign language nor cultish jargon was to be sought. The Spirit distributes all such gifts as he sees fit; and the spirit of the prophet is subject to the prophet (I Cor. 12:11; 14:32, 33).  This was shock number two. 
(3) The church was divided over tongues in general. Each half condemned the other.  Paul stated that neither half was the better or the worse for tongues in general or for the lack of them. Tongues made no one any better (I Cor. 13 :1), and they made no one any worse. Here he refers to languages (I Cor.  14:39b; 14:6). This was shock number three. 
(4) Now Paul comes to grips with the vital issue at hand. The unknown form of tongues came from the Greek mystery cults, or from barbarianism, and leads to barbarianism (I Cor. 14:11). An outsider coming in would think that they were mad, i.e. that they were members of a Greek mystery cult whose members worked themselves into a mad emotional frenzy (I Cor. 14:23). Shock number four. 
(5) The understandings and the spirit must get together in the person speaking. This they do not do in unknown tongues. (They do in languages with regard to the person speaking). Hence said Paul: "I had rather speak five words with my understanding than ten thousand words (10,000 was infinity to the Jew) in an unknown tongue (I Cor. 14:19, 20). Shock number five. 
(6) Childish things, emotional immaturity were to be put away as spiritual childhood passed. They were to outgrow all carryovers from childish immature past, and grow up spiritually and mentally (I Cor. 14:20).  This state of childishness is related to speaking in the unknown tongue (I Cor. 14:19).  Shock number six.
(7) All are not apostles, or prophets, or teachers; all do not have gifts, and all do not speak in languages. This is exceedingly hard on "tongue evidence" people (I Cor. 12:29-30). Foreign languages could be used in the presence of a human interpreter, but not if there were no such interpreter present. Unknown tongues had no human interpreter, as only God knew: and he knew the same way as a mother knows what her three-week-old baby says. In neither case does God relay the interpretation to man.  Thus the unknown tongues people were to drop it ( I Cor. 14:2, 27, 28). Nothing is said of it in the second letter, so apparently they dropped it. 
(8) With a certain kind of past training, under highly emotionalized pressures, and repeating with intensity over and over again rhythmic sentences, clauses or words with desires set on a certain result, the vocal organs are detached from the conscious and become attached to the subconscious or subliminal. Then whatever has been heard read, imagined, etc., may be expressed. The phenomena are not confined to vocal sounds, but may also include physical action such as playing the piano, or violin, etc. The more often such a phenomenon is used the easier it is to be reproduced. Indeed, after a while, the phenomenon may appear when it is neither sought nor desired.  Such generally become mental and physical wrecks. It was not unusual in heathen or pagan religions for the people to work themselves into such emotional states or frenzies. It came into Christianity from the Greek mystery cults around Corinth, and proves nothing beyond the fact that we are a sick race mentally as well as physically. 
5.  Everything was to be done decently and in order, as God was not the author of confusion (unknown tongues) but of peace (I Cor. 14 :32, 33, 40). Paul insisted on the spirit and the understanding getting together, and staying together (I cor. 14: 15). 
1. No physical gift can be a sign of spiritual reality, and no such gift is to be sought (I Cor. 12:28-30). The Spirit distributes these severally as he wills (I Cor. 12:11). The best gifts or graces of the Spirit are to be sought such as are expressed in Gal 5:22, 23 (I Cor. 12:31). 
2. Language known and unknown is a spiritual evidence of nothing. While the Corinthians were speaking in unknown tongues they knew nothing, experientially, of Pentecost as they were unsanctified at the time (I Cor. 3:1-4; 12:3b; 13:1-13). 
3. No physical gift of the spirit has a promise attached. This goes for tongues, known or unknown. Other things or states do have promises attached, for example:
(1) The perfected in love are to have boldness in the day of judgment (I John 4:16-18).
(2) The pure in heart are to see God (Matt.  5:8). 
(3) The clean in hand and pure in heart are to ascend into the hill of the Lord, and are to stand in his holy place (Psalms 24:3, 4a).
(4) The pure in heart are to enter into glory (Psalms 73:1, 24).
(5) The holy in heart are to see the Lord (Hebrews 12:14). 
(6) It is said that we are saved by faith, sanctified by faith, are kept by faith, walk by faith, and that faith pleases God (Hebrews 11:6). Fancy that being said of tongues. 
4. The tongues evidence people are not entitled to the name Pentecostalism. They should use the term Corinthianism—to that they are entitled.
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