It was on the Day of Pentecost, recorded in Acts chapter 2, that a “sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind” filled a house where the followers of our Lord were gathered, and “cloven tongues like as of fire sat upon each of them…and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.” And with that event the prophetic word of the prophet Joel was fulfilled and the New Testament Church began its powerful march through the pages of sacred history.
It was in 1906 that a “20th century version” of Acts 2 was manifested in Los Angeles, California and the great Azusa Street Revival launched a move of the Holy Spirit that has swept our nation and literally spread around the world impacting the Body of Christ and the church much as it did in the days of the 1st Century church.
For over 2000 years now the power of the Holy Spirit has been manifested in the lives of countless thousands. The IPHC has been a part of that great move of the Spirit for well over 100 years. And now, as we move into a celebration of our “Core Values” as a denomination, we have chosen 2015 to focus on the fact that “We Prayerfully Value Pentecost.” We are being called upon to prayerfully reflect on the vital importance of Pentecost and to proclaim with a fresh and powerful voice our commitment to this great doctrine of the Bible and the IPHC.
There are a number of ways in which you can participate and call your congregation to a fresh commitment to this great truth. It has been suggested by our General leadership that we divide the year into four quarterly emphases: (1) January to March – Focus on “Who is the Holy Spirit”; (2) April to June – Focus on “The Baptism of the Holy Spirit; (3) July to September – Focus on “The Fruit of the Spirit”; (4) October to December – Focus on “The Gifts of the Spirit.”
To assist in these emphases we are asking every pastor to make available to your people the book by R.T. Kendall entitled “40 Days with the Holy Spirit.” This is an excellent daily devotional for your people to use at any time during the year, but perhaps especially from Easter to Pentecost. There is also going to be a major emphasis during the five Sundays of May, which will include resources for children, teens and adults for each Sunday during that month. I am asking every pastor to take seriously this call to re-affirm and proclaim the truth and reality of the great Pentecostal experience during the coming year. Let’s believe for a fresh out-pouring of Pentecost across Cornerstone and the IPHC in 2015.
Bishop Doyle G. Marley