2 Seven weeks had gone by since Jesus’ death and resurrection, and the Day of Pentecost had now arrived.[a] As the believers met together that day, 2 suddenly there was a sound like the roaring of a mighty windstorm in the skies above them and it filled the house where they were meeting. 3 Then, what looked like flames or tongues of fire appeared and settled on their heads. 4 And everyone present was filled with the Holy Spirit and began speaking in languages they didn’t know,[b] for the Holy Spirit gave them this ability.
5 Many godly Jews were in Jerusalem that day for the religious celebrations, having arrived from many nations. 6 And when they heard the roaring in the sky above the house, crowds came running to see what it was all about, and were stunned to hear their own languages being spoken by the disciples.
7 “How can this be?” they exclaimed. “For these men are all from Galilee, 8 and yet we hear them speaking all the native languages of the lands where we were born! 9 Here we are—Parthians, Medes, Elamites, men from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, Asia Minor, 10 Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, the Cyrene language areas of Libya, visitors from Rome—both Jews and Jewish converts— 11 Cretans, and Arabians. And we all hear these men telling in our own languages about the mighty miracles of God!”
12 They stood there amazed and perplexed. “What can this mean?” they asked each other.
13 But others in the crowd were mocking. “They’re drunk, that’s all!” they said.
14 Then Peter stepped forward with the eleven apostles and shouted to the crowd, “Listen, all of you, visitors and residents of Jerusalem alike! 15 Some of you are saying these men are drunk! It isn’t true! It’s much too early for that! People don’t get drunk by 9:00 a.m.! 16 No! What you see this morning was predicted centuries ago by the prophet Joel— 17 ‘In the last days,’ God said, ‘I will pour out my Holy Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men dream dreams. 18 Yes, the Holy Spirit shall come upon all my servants, men and women alike, and they shall prophesy. 19 And I will cause strange demonstrations in the heavens and on the earth—blood and fire and clouds of smoke; 20 the sun shall turn black and the moon blood-red before that awesome Day of the Lord arrives. 21 But anyone who asks for mercy from the Lord shall have it and shall be saved.’
22 “O men of Israel, listen! God publicly endorsed Jesus of Nazareth by doing tremendous miracles through him, as you well know. 23 But God, following his prearranged plan, let you use the Roman government[c] to nail him to the cross and murder him. 24 Then God released him from the horrors of death and brought him back to life again, for death could not keep this man within its grip.
25 “King David quoted Jesus as saying:
‘I know the Lord is always with me. He is helping me. God’s mighty power supports me.
26 ‘No wonder my heart is filled with joy and my tongue shouts his praises! For I know all will be well with me in death—
27 ‘You will not leave my soul in hell or let the body of your Holy Son decay.
28 ‘You will give me back my life and give me wonderful joy in your presence.’
29 “Dear brothers, think! David wasn’t referring to himself when he spoke these words I have quoted, for he died and was buried, and his tomb is still here among us. 30 But he was a prophet, and knew God had promised with an unbreakable oath that one of David’s own descendants would be the Messiah and[d] sit on David’s throne. 31 David was looking far into the future and predicting the Messiah’s resurrection, and saying that the Messiah’s soul would not be left in hell and his body would not decay. 32 He was speaking of Jesus, and we all are witnesses that Jesus rose from the dead.
33 “And now he sits on the throne of highest honor in heaven, next to God. And just as promised, the Father gave him the authority to send the Holy Spirit—with the results you are seeing and hearing today.
34 “No, David was not speaking of himself in these words of his I have quoted,[e] for he never ascended into the skies. Moreover, he further stated, ‘God spoke to my Lord, the Messiah, and said to him, Sit here in honor beside me 35 until I bring your enemies into complete subjection.’
36 “Therefore I clearly state to everyone in Israel that God has made this Jesus you crucified to be the Lord, the Messiah!”
37 These words of Peter’s moved them deeply, and they said to him and to the other apostles, “Brothers, what should we do?”
38 And Peter replied, “Each one of you must turn from sin, return to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; then you also shall receive this gift, the Holy Spirit. 39 For Christ promised him to each one of you who has been called by the Lord our God, and to your children and even to those in distant lands!”
40 Then Peter preached a long sermon, telling about Jesus and strongly urging all his listeners to save themselves from the evils of their nation. 41 And those who believed Peter were baptized—about three thousand in all! 42 They joined with the other believers in regular attendance at the apostles’ teaching sessions and at the Communion services[f] and prayer meetings.
43 A deep sense of awe was on them all, and the apostles did many miracles.
44 And all the believers met together constantly and shared everything with each other, 45 selling their possessions and dividing with those in need. 46 They worshiped together regularly at the Temple each day, met in small groups in homes for Communion, and shared their meals with great joy and thankfulness, 47 praising God. The whole city was favorable to them, and each day God added to them all who were being saved.
- Acts 2:1 This annual celebration came fifty days after the Passover ceremonies, when Christ was crucified. See Leviticus 23:16.
- Acts 2:4 in languages they didn’t know, literally, “in other tongues.”
- Acts 2:23 the Roman government, literally, “men without the law”; see Romans 2:12.
- Acts 2:30 be the Messiah and, implied in v. 31.
- Acts 2:34 No, David was not speaking of himself in these words of his I have quoted, implied in v. 31.
- Acts 2:42 the Communion services, literally, “the breaking of bread,” i.e., “the Lord’s Supper.”