Understanding the Scriptures
|Pentecost (v. 1)||Summer feast of harvest|
|Cloven (v. 3)||Split, forked|
|Utterance (v. 4)||Ability to speak|
|Confounded (v. 6)||Puzzled, confused|
|Proselytes (v. 10)||Converts|
|Determinate counsel (v. 23)||Appointed purpose|
|Corruption (v. 27)||Decay, decomposition of the body|
|Pricked (v. 37)||Touched, felt guilty|
Acts 2:1–4—What Happened on the Day of Pentecost?
The Feast of Pentecost, fifty days after the Passover, celebrated the harvest of early summer. This holiday attracted large crowds to Jerusalem for a time of feasting and celebration. When the believers gathered together on this day, the Lord sent the power of the Holy Ghost as He had promised before He ascended into heaven (see Acts 1:4–8).
After receiving this power, the Apostles did not hesitate to speak to the crowds about Jesus Christ. The miracle of Pentecost was that the Holy Ghost gave the Apostles the gift of tongues (see D&C 46:11, 24). All who listened were able to understand what was being preached because the Spirit helped them hear it in their native tongue. This great event brought about three thousand new members into the Church.
Acts 2:44—“All Things Common”
To have all things common is to have such love and unity in the Church that all Saints share what they have with the poor among them. This is a principle of the gospel called “consecration” (see D&C 42:30–39). Elder Bruce R. McConkie described consecration: “The law of consecration is that we consecrate [set apart or devote] our time, our talents, and our money and property to the cause of the Church; such are to be available to the extent they are needed to further the Lord’s interests on earth” (in Conference Report, Apr. 1975, 74; or Ensign, May 1975, 50).
Consecration is one of the principles the Saints must learn to live in order to be worthy of the celestial kingdom (see D&C 105:3–5). Today we are preparing to live the law of consecration as we willingly pay tithing and make other offerings that help people in need.
Studying the Scriptures
Do two of the following activities (A–D) as you study Acts 2.
Be a News Reporter
The events of that day of Pentecost were remarkable. Imagine you are watching the events described in Acts 2:1–16 as a news reporter. Write an article for the evening paper describing who was involved and what happened.
A Fulfillment of Prophecy
Review Acts 2:6–21 and answer the following questions:
Write about a time when you felt an outpouring of the Spirit in your life.
A Change in Peter
How did the events of that Pentecost begin to fulfill the Lord’s promise in Acts 1:4–5, 8?
Read Peter’s bold testimony of Jesus Christ. Choose two ideas from his testimony that are most important to you and explain why.
“What Should We Do?”
Many who heard Peter believed his testimony of Christ and asked what they should do. Peter told them to repent and be baptized. About three thousand people joined the Church that day.
Suppose you had a friend who expressed an interest in the Church. Write a letter to your friend to help him or her understand how and why we should follow Jesus Christ and how we become a member of His Church. In it use what Peter said in Acts 2:37–40 and put it into your own words.