“While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit fell upon all those who heard the word.”
I would like to focus the attention on one word in these verses, “fell,” that is the word that has captured my attention while studying these verses tonight.
“The Holy Spirit fell on all those who heard the word.”
The first thing I see here is that what is happening is the work of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit was the initiator of what was happening. It doesn’t say they grabbed it, or that they reached out and seized the Holy Spirit, it says, "the Holy Ghost fell on them all."
Second the word “fell” means to come upon suddenly, to come with power, to seize or take possession of. One of the definitions for this Greek word even says, “To strike or to hit.” In other words, the Holy Spirit came upon them in an undeniable manner and it was a visible manifestation of the power of God.
They were visibly and physically affected. They felt it, and anyone present could see the effects of the Spirit upon them. As I was reading this scripture my mind went to other passages in the Word where the power of God fell.
1 Chronicles 21:26
“David made an altar to the Lord and called upon the Lord and God answered him from heaven by fire upon the altar of burnt offering.”
This was also an undeniable visible manifestation of the power of God. The example that really stands out was when Elijah squared off with the false prophets of Baal upon Mt Carmel.
The false prophets and the Man of God came to an agreement. They would both build an altar and offer a sacrifice but put no fire under it. They would call on their respective gods, and the god that answered by fire he would be recognized as the one true God. The false prophets built their altar and laid the sacrifice on the altar and called upon Baal from morning till noon with no answer.
Elijah began to mock them, then they became violent and went into a frenzy and began to jump on the altar and cut themselves until the blood gushed out upon them. They continued from noon till the evening sacrifice. Then Elijah took over the stage.
Elijah repaired the altar of the Lord that was broken down, he put the wood in order, and put the sacrifice on the wood then he had them pour 12 barrels of water on the sacrifice and then he prayed, a short prayer. And the bible says that the fire of the Lord “fell” and consumed the burnt sacrifice and the wood and the stones and the dust and licked up the water that was in the trench.
What happened upon that mountain was so powerful and so undeniable that it turned a nation back to God. They experienced a visible tangible manifestation of the power of God. They had a God Encounter. The Fire of God, the Power of God, fell upon that Mountain on that Altar and that Sacrifice.
Then my mind goes to Acts 2:1-4:
“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord[a] in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. 4 And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
· The fire of God Fell on David’s altar and burnt offerings
· The Fire of God fell on Solomon’s offering and sacrifices
· The Fire of God, The power of God fell on Mt Carmel
· The Holy Ghost Fire fell on the day of Pentecost
· The Holy Ghost Fire fell on the gentiles in Cornelius house.
In each case, Old and New Testament, it was a visible and undeniable manifestation of the Power of God. In each case those involved experienced a God encounter. I remember when I was a child having these types of visible and tangible God encounters on a regular basis in the church services where I came to know Jesus.
What am I getting at with all this background? What is it that is weighing heavy on my mind this evening? I am seriously concerned that we may be raising a generation of young Christians who have never had a God encounter. A generation that has never experienced a tangible and undeniable manifestation of the power of God. I am concerned that many of the old Pentecostal denominations are becoming Pentecostal in name only because the current generation of believers:
· Know God in theory
· Know God religiously
· Know God mentally or intellectually
· They know about God
But have they ever had a Mt. Carmel, a Day of Pentecost, or a “House of Cornelius” encounter with the Fire of God falling on them? I ,wonder to myself, have they ever experienced the power of the Holy Ghost seizing them and taking possession of them? Have they ever experienced the supernatural fire of God burning in their hands and their feet? To so many in this generation today, the fire of God is just a concept, it’s just an idea and an encounter with God is when they get goose pimples listening to a worship song.
But it is my mission tonight to tell you that the fire of God is not just a concept, it is not just an idea, it is not a theory or philosophy to be studied. It is not the figment of an over active imagination or religious ramblings. The fire of God is the manifestation of the Holy Ghost, it is a God encounter and it is:
· The same fire that fell on Mt Carmel
· The same fire that fell on the day of Pentecost
· The same fire that fell in Cornelius House.
· Real, Tangible, Alive, and it is Contagious!
· The mighty power of God
Why is this power so important? Because:
· The fire of God can heal cancer
· The fire of God can flush drugs out of your system and take the desire all at the same time
· The fire of God can deliver you from alcohol, pornography, lust, and perversion.
· The fire of God can destroy jealousy, pride, criticism, bitterness, and unforgiveness.
· The fire of God will heal your broken heart, it will restore joy and peace.
· The fire of God will heal your marriage
· The fire of God will heal your mind.
My prayer tonight is, God do it again! Let the fire fall! That same fire that fell on the day of Pentecost and that same fire that fell on the gentiles in the home of Cornelius, do it again Lord, do it again!
· Let the fire fall!
· Come suddenly, come forcibly, and come powerfully!
· Rush in on us and take possession of us!
I’m not satisfied just to read about it and sing about it, I want to experience it!
Jesus said: “Ye shall receive power after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you…” This power is not a theory or a concept, it is the same power that caused the sun and moon to stand still, and it’s the same power that divided the red sea, caused water to flow out of a rock like a river. It’s the same power that made the three Hebrew children fire proof, that gave Daniels lions lock jaw, and that shook Paul and Silas’s prison off its foundations. Let it fall Lord, let it fall!
This power is the same power that was upon Jesus life. It opened blind eyes, unstopped deaf ears, made the lame to walk and the dumb to talk, and it is the same power that raised the dead including the Lord Jesus Himself. Let it fall Lord, let it fall!
It is this same fire, this same anointing, and this same power that God wants to send on your life right now. God is waiting and He wants to fall on your life with a tangible, undeniable, irrefutable, and indisputable manifestation of the power of the Holy Ghost.
Matthew 5:6 - “Blessed are they that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled.”
Matthew 7:7 – “Ask and ye shall receive, seek and ye shall find, knock and the door shall be opened unto you.”
Jeremiah 33:3 – “Call unto me and I will answer you and show you great and mighty things which thou knowest not.”
Hunger is a magnet, it will draw the anointing, and will open the door for the manifestation of the Power of God
The great Apostle of Faith Smith Wigglesworth said, “Every Soul touched by Pentecost should be a live wire.”
I believe there are some hungry and thirsty people who refuse to be satisfied or pacified with anything less than a personal encounter with the true power of God. The power of God is going to seize your life, take hold on your life and set your life on fire. Just as the fire of God fell on Mt Carmel and consumed everything, the sacrifice, the wood, the stones, the dirt and the water in the trench, so also is the consuming fire of God falling on your life.
The God we serve still answers by fire. Wherever there is an altar, wherever there is a sacrifice, wherever there is anointed prayer, wherever there are hungry hearts, and wherever there is a desperation for Him, the God who answers by fire is available right now.
He power is waiting to fall on you:
· He is ready to save you
· He is willing to heal you
· He is waiting to deliver you
· He is waiting to restore your marriage
· He is here to revive and to resurrect you and to put His fire back in you
Fall Lord, fall on us now! Fall on our hearts, fall on our lives, fall on our marriages, fall on our ministries, fall on our visions and dreams, fall on our attitudes, fall on our families, fall our finances, fall on our minds, and fall on our bodies.
Fall Lord, fall! Consume us, burn up dead religion, burn up carnality, burn up dead traditions, burn up everything that is not of you and set us on fire!