22 June 2022Acts 2:14-21
'In the last days it will be, God declares, that I will pour out my Spirit upon all flesh, and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.' (v. 17)
As I read this passage of Scripture, I can’t help but think back to my years as a teenager growing up in London. There was a betting shop on the local high street directly across the road from a pub. I would regularly see groups of adults there, standing outside intoxicated from alcohol (and probably other things too). I must admit that I would have found it very hard to believe if I was told that they were not drunk, but instead were buzzing from a sermon they had heard. That would have been impossible for me to comprehend!
But this is the backdrop to the passage we are reading today. The Apostles behave in such a way that people deemed them to be drunk. It might be worth noting, that during this time in Jerusalem, people from all over the world who were part of the Jewish diaspora came to the city to celebrate Shavuot (the Feast of Weeks). With this in mind, it doesn’t seem so far-fetched to conclude that there were a group of people who had started their celebrations early. However, Peter moves to address the crowd and correct this misconception. He dispels the notion that they were drunk and informs them that in fact they are witnessing what had been prophesied in the Book of Joel – God pouring out the Spirit on all people.
What excites me most about this passage are the lines “Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams.” (v. 17) Young people are included in this promise! Not only are they included, but they also have an active and important role to play within the wider Church.
Lastly, I think about Peter boldly addressing the crowd and sharing his faith (along with the other Apostles) and how this very act of proclaiming his faith helped to deepen it. I wonder if this act can serve as an example for us individually and as a church body to be courageous in serving our communities and to be bold like the Apostles in sharing the hope that we have in Jesus.
- Do you or your church make space for young people to play an active role within it?
- Do you share your faith in the hope and expectation that God will pour out the Spirit on all people, as promised in Scripture?