The tongues of fire of Pentecost were a significant symbol of the presence and power of the Holy Spirit. None who experienced this heaven-sent visitation were ever the same again, for God, as a Living Presence, had become a reality in their lives.
When people leave their churches next Sunday morning, how many will do so with burning hearts? How many will be filled with a joy that will compel them to tell others of the living Saviour? These are questions every minister should ask himself, for the pulpit should be a spiritual transformer through which divine power is transmitted to the pew.
Some ministers allow their enthusiasm for the social implications of the Gospel to becloud the Gospel itself; they are concerned only with the things that are seen, forgetting or never knowing the preciousness of things not seen.
It is possible for the pulpit to become so overwhelmed by the urgency of world problems that preacher and hearer alike lose their perspective and undertake to right the ills of mankind in the arm of flesh alone. How easy to forget that it is “not by might, nor by power, but by my Spirit, says the Lord of hosts” (Zech. 4:6).
On the road to Emmaus two despondent disciples plodded along in the gloom of a lost hope and a shattered ideal. As they walked they were quietly joined by a stranger who asked them the meaning of their conversation that he had overheard. Amazed at his apparent ignorance of the events that were the “talk of the town,” they recounted the story of Jesus—his mighty works, their hope that it was he who would deliver Israel, his arrest, crucifixion, and death, and now the incredible rumor that he was alive.
The stranger was frankly critical of their ignorance and unbelief. “ ‘O foolish men, and slow of ...1
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