Pentecost and Related Events
Dr. W. Noble King
All Rights Reserved
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").
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.
(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.
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. Peter said:
(2) "And hereby we know
that we are of the truth, and shall assure our hearts before him" (1 John
(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)
(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).
3. Paul said:
(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)
(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).
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.
(2) "And because ye are
sons God hath sent forth the spirit of his Son into your hearts" (Gal.
(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).
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,
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
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
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
(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.
(2) Now let us
summarize our findings:
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.
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.
(3) Mere accompaniments
are accidental to the setting, and may in themselves be hindrances rather
b. If all accompaniments
were evidences, then all accompaniments would have to appear in all ten
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.
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
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. 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:
(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
(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.
(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
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:
(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
(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
Thus John, Peter, and Paul are
in accord that heart purity, perfected love, the indwelling Spirit are
evidences of the baptism with the Spirit.
(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.
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. Apparent blessing,
and physical demonstration are possible in the non-salvation area.
(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."
(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).
3. Unknown Tongues, or
Corinthianism is non-Pentecostal, and heathen or pagan in origin.
(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.
(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.).
4. Now notice Paul’s method
of dealing with this problem. He must unite the church, and save it for
(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.
(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.
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:
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) 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.
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).
4. The tongues evidence people
are not entitled to the name Pentecostalism. They should use the term Corinthianism—to
that they are entitled.
(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.