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The Day of Pentecost will be celebrated on Sunday, May 28, 2023.
To attend a Pentecost service, visit locator.lcms.org/church to find a local Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod congregation. Enter your zip code and click “Search” to see a list of area churches, service times, and contact information.
If you are homebound, traveling, or otherwise unable to attend a service in person, KFUO Radio airs worship services throughout the church year. Visit KFUO.org to view the schedule and listen to services.
What is Pentecost?
The word “Pentecost” (pronounced PEN-tuh-kost) comes from the Greek word pentekostos which means “fiftieth.” Exactly 50 days after Jesus rose from the dead, the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples in the form of flames of fire.
Kids in the Divine Service — Pentecost
Liturgical colors for Pentecost
The altar will be adorned with red. Red is a power color and is appropriate for use on Pentecost Sunday. On this day we remember the power and fire of “the Lord and Giver of Life,” who revealed himself as the promised one. The color red communicates the motif of strength-strength and power the Holy Spirit gives in order for God’s people to call on the name of Jesus Christ and share that powerful name with others.
Three-Year Series A
- Numbers 11:24–30
- Acts 2:1–21
- John 7:37–39
The Risen Lord Jesus Pours Out the Holy Spirit
The Lord took “some of the Spirit” that was on Moses “and put it on the seventy elders” of Israel (Num. 11:25), and they “prophesied in the camp” (Num. 11:26). In the same way, our risen Lord Jesus poured out His Holy Spirit at the Feast of Pentecost — the 50th day and the “Eighth Sunday” of Easter. When “a sound like a mighty rushing wind” and “tongues as of fire appeared” and rested on each of the 12 apostles, “they were all filled with the Holy Spirit” and proclaimed “the mighty works of God” (Acts 2:2–4, 11). The Lord Jesus grants this same Spirit to His Church on earth to proclaim Him glorified on the cross and risen victorious from the grave for us sinners. From His open heart, our crucified and risen Lord pours out His Holy Spirit in “rivers of living water” (John 7:38) and invites everyone who thirsts to come to Him and drink freely (John 7:37). Through this life-giving work of the Holy Spirit, we hear our pastors “telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God” (Acts 2:11), and “everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Acts 2:21).
- Genesis 11:1–9
- Acts 2:1–21
- John 14:23–31
The Holy Spirit Gives Peace
Following the flood, Noah’s descendants failed to spread out and fill the earth as God had spoken. Rather, they exalted themselves; with “one language and the same words” (Gen. 11:1) they spoke proudly and arrogantly. The Lord humbled them by confusing “the language of all the earth,” dividing and dispersing the people (Gen. 11:9). That dispersal was reversed on Pentecost Day (the fiftieth day of Easter), when God caused the one Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ to be preached in a multitude of languages. “At this sound the multitude came together” (Acts 2:6), for the preaching of Christ is the primary work of the Holy Spirit, whereby He gathers people from all nations into one Church. The Holy Spirit teaches and brings to our remembrance the words of Jesus, which are the words of the Father who sent Him. These words bestow forgiveness and peace to those who keep and hold on to them in love for Jesus. “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.” (John 14:27).