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Fast, Pray, Be Filled: 2017 Pilgrimage to Pentecost

Acts 2:4 (KJV) – And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

What is the Pilgrimage to Pentecost? This “50 Days of Prayer” was established by our Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. in order to empower the saints of the Church Of God In Christ to fervently seek the Power of God in a 50-day period of consecration and sanctification, from Easter (or “Resurrection Sunday”), through the Day of Pentecost.

The purpose of this consecration is for the Church Of God In Christ to petition God for continuance of the Pentecostal revival and outpouring. The aim is for all of the saints, in this changing world, to hold onto our unchanging faith; and as always, to fight for salvation and righteousness in a violent and immoral world.

What is every member of the Church Of God In Christ requested to do?  For the next 50 days, we are asked by our Presiding Bishop to take 11 minutes out of our daily prayer time to focus on the prayer requests provided in the prayer guide.

 

The dates for the 2017 Pilgrimage are:

SUNDAY, APRIL 16 – SUNDAY, JUNE 4, 2017

It is our hope and prayer that:

(1) every member of the Church Of God In Christ who has not been filled with the gift of the Holy Spirit would be filled, according to Acts 2:4; and that

(2) every believer who is already filled would receive a “refilling” of the Holy Spirit, according to Acts 4:31 and Ephesians 5:18.

We pray that this event impacts your life, and that praying for empowerment in the Spirit becomes a lifetime endeavor.

 

 

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The History of Pentecost: Pentecostal Praise – Part I

Dr. William L Sheals of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Norcross, GA shares the history of the Christian church and what Pentecostal praise truly means, on Pentecost Sunday at West Angeles Church of God In Christ, May 15, 2016.

 

JESUS, AND THE BEGINNING OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH

All churches should be Pentecostal, because the church was born on the Day of Pentecost. It was born after the power of the Holy Spirit manifested, as told in Acts 2:1-4.

Jesus spoke the church into existence supernaturally on Caesarea Philippi when He quizzed His disciples

The mihrab within the Upper Room (pictured center) was built during Muslim occupation.

The mihrab within the Upper Room (pictured center) was built during Muslim occupation.

asking, “Who do men say that I am?” Peter answered, “You are the Christ; Son of the living God.” Then Jesus answered him, “Yes, and upon that truth I build my church.” (Matthew 16:13-18)

Although Jesus spoke the church supernaturally into existence, she didn’t come into the manifestation until the day Pentecost had fully come. She was birthed after she received power and that power was the power of the Holy Spirit. When He came in, like a mighty rushing wind, tongues of fire set upon their heads and filled the house and filled everybody in the house and they were filled with power.

Let’s revisit that day, 2000 years ago:

Acts 2:1-4 (NKJV) Coming of the Holy Spirit – 2 When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord 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.

When we’re filled with the Holy Spirit, some of us quench the spirit, and that’s a sin. But for those of us who release Him, there’s power that permeates our very being, and you can’t keep it on the inside. That’s what happened to the 120 disciples who came out of the upper room that day.

There were also people from other nations who had gathered in Jerusalem at that time:

Acts 2:12-13 12 So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “Whatever could this mean?” 13 Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.”

There’s a difference between Pentecostal praise, and what we call “praise” in the 21st century. We call “making noise” praise. But when it’s Pentecostal praise, it comes from the Holy Spirit. We cannot praise God in the flesh. We must come out of self, and the Holy Spirit within us will please God in the praise, if we release Him to do so.

 

WHAT IS PENTECOST?

Pentecost means ’50th.’ It refers to the Jewish feast celebrated 50 days after the 2nd day of Passover. It was called “Feast of Weeks” in Exodus 34:22 and Deuteronomy 16:10, and “Feast of the Harvest” in Exodus 23:16.

Pentecost, a day of thanksgiving to mark the end of the grain harvest, is a Holy Sabbath Day. On the day of Pentecost in Acts 1-3, Jesus was with the disciples for 40 days, then ascended back to heaven. We celebrate Pentecost 10 days after His ascension, on the 50th day after Jesus had risen from the dead. On that day, the words of Joel (v. 3:18) and John the Baptist (Matthew 3:11) were fulfilled.

On this day set aside to praise the Lord for giving His people a great harvest, the Lord began to harvest the lost souls of this world, through His church. The church, and the people who made up the church, would never be the same.

 

THE CHURCH, AND PENTECOSTAL PRAISE

Since those times, we have changed the format and the meaning of why we really come together. We come together as sacred assembly – we are the church – but when we do, it ought to be Pentecost Sunday every Sunday. We cannot duplicate the events of Pentecost; we cannot go to Jerusalem, enter the Upper Room and wait to be filled with the Holy Spirit. The Holy Ghost has already come and baptized every person who is saved (Corinthians 12:13).  In Ephesians 5:18, the Lord says,

Be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess, but be filled with My Spirit.

We cannot duplicate the miracles of that day: they are God’s doing (and we are foolish if we spend our time seeking the spectacular)! However, we can duplicate the conditions which existed among the people of God in that day.

The revival in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost is the greatest of all times. No revival has ever been so celebrated, nor so tremendous in its immediate effects and none has been so lasting in its result. The 120 disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ were suddenly immersed in the Holy Spirit. Their character changed, the way that they spoke changed, they spoke in different languages, the church was birthed on fire. We need another Pentecost experience.

 

SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES: Acts 1-3, Chronicles 4:1, Matthew 16:13-19, Exodus 34:22, Deuteronomy 16:10, Exodus 23:16, Joel 3:18, Matthew 3:11, Corinthians 12:13,  Ephesians 5:18

Adapted from the sermon, “Pentecostal Praise – Part I,” by Dr. William L. Sheals. West Angeles Church of God In  Christ on Pentecost Sunday, May 15, 2016.

Photos, courtesy Studium Biblicum Franciscanum.


Dr. William L. Sheals is Senior Pastor of Hopewell Missionary Baptist Church in Norcross, CA, also known as “The City of Hope.” Hopewell Baptist is built on what was originally a junkyard. It takes lives which had once been wrecks, and turns them into vehicles of praise for the glory and honor of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As the accomplished author of seven books, including “Walking In Authority: Biblical Examples for Modern Times” and “Live in the Spirit for Life,” Bishop Sheals is an ambassador of Reconciliation and Goodwill for Israel, and spokesman for the Global Peace Movement. He is also in an independent film producer with his own production company, “End Touch Movies.” Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake, Sr. preached at Hopewell “Bapticostal” Church, as it is affectionately known, in honor of Dr. Sheals’ 36th anniversary as pastor there.

Get the entire series Pentecostal Praise Parts I, II, & III HERE on West Angeles Gospel on Demand. Look for PENTECOSTAL PRAISE, PART II, coming soon to Westa.org.

PRAISE THE LORD!  Read our post, Bishop Blake on How To Praise the Lord HERE, on Westa.org.

SERMON: Bishop Blake Preaches “Baptism In The Holy Ghost”

“To live a righteous life in this wicked world, you need the power and the help of Almighty God” – Presiding Bishop Charles Edward Blake

Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake and the West Angeles congregation celebrated Pentecost Sunday, “the day that the Holy Spirit fell upon the disciples,” said Bishop, who prayed that everyone in the congregation also be refilled with God’s power.

Acts 2:13 tells us that some who witnessed this event mocked the disciples by saying they were “full of new wine.” But  in verses 15 -17, the Apostle Peter said:

15 “For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. 16 But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:
17
‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God,
That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh;
Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
Your young men shall see visions,
Your old men shall dream dreams.

“That includes everybody in the room,” Bishop said, “You’re in one of those categories! Tell your neighbor, ‘God wants to Bless everybody in this room!’”

See this entire Pentecost Sunday service at WestA Gospel-on-Demand. Highlights from Bishop’s sermon titled “Baptism In The Holy Ghost” follow:

“After you’ve turned away from a life of sin and unrighteousness, God has in store for you one of the most Blessed experiences that is available to man. That experience is baptism in the Holy Ghost, or baptism in the Holy Spirit.”

“’Ghost’ and ‘spirit’ are translated from the same Greek word, ‘pnuema.’”

“If you’re saved, the Holy Ghost has already played a significant part in your life.”

“Jesus gives us the right and the authority of becoming sons and daughters of God. But it is the Holy Spirit that does the work of regeneration, and imparts new life to the believer.”

“The Holy Ghost implants the nature and the life of Jesus Christ into the believer.”

“To live a righteous life in this wicked world, you need the power and the help of Almighty God.”

“When you’re really, really saved, you don’t need anybody to tell you you’re saved. There’s a release, and the Holy Ghost speaks within you…that’s it!”

“It was R.A. Torrey who said, ‘A man may be regenerated by the Holy Spirit, and still not be baptized in the Holy Spirit.’”1

“In regeneration (in the Holy Spirit), the is an impartation of life…but in baptism in the Holy Spirit, there’s an impartation of power. And the one who receives that is fitted for service and battle for the Lord.”

You need Him more than you need water… it is in Him that you live, and move, and have your being – Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake

“The Lord is asking somebody in this room today, ‘All I want you to do is just ask, what do you want Me to do for you?’ I pray everyone will lift up their hands and say, ‘Lord, I want you to fill me with Your Holy Spirit!’”

“If Jesus needed the power of the Holy Ghost, how much more do you and I need the power of the Holy Ghost?”

“I hope you’ll be so filled with the power and the might of Almighty God, that the world will come to you and say, ‘What can we do for you so that your God won’t be mad at us?’”

“If you’ve got your Holy Ghost weapons in place, you can withstand any attack of the enemy!”

“Come on, tell somebody, ‘I am an overcomer!’ Clap your hands and give praise to God!”

“The prophet Joel had already promised that the day was coming when God would just pour out the Holy Ghost, rather than giving it out in portions and in measures… as He did in the Old Testament. God is now ready to pour it out!”

“You ought to be yearning for God…God is the most essential element of your existence! There’s nothing more important than God!”

“It’s all about Jesus!”

“You need Him more than you need water. You need Him more than you need food. You need Him more than you need the beating of your heart. It is in Him that you live, and move, and have your being!”

“Come on, lift up your hands and say, ‘Lord, fill me with the Holy Ghost!’”

“He’s already here!”

“The Holy Ghost has already been sent; He only needs now to be received by faith.”

“That’s what faith does…faith assumes that what has been prayed for has been done!”

“Baptism in the Holy Ghost is not the same as being born again.”

“What God does is good. And if it was good then, it’s good now.”

“Whatever’s on the menu, God, I want it!”

“We are commanded as believers to receive the Holy Ghost!”

SCRIPTURAL REFERENCES – John 7:37-39, John 3:5, John 6:63, Romans 8:2, 8:16*, John 14:16, Numbers 11:17,25, 2 Kings 2:9, Luke 1:15-17…the Lord, John 3:34, Luke 4:14-19, Luke 4:1; Romans 8:31, Ephesians 6:12, 2 Corinthians 10:4, 1 John 4:4, Joel 2:28-29; John 7:37; John 7:39; Acts 8:5, 12-16; Romans 10:9; Acts 19:1-6; Acts 10:46; Acts 2:4; Jude 1:20; John 20:22; Luke 24:49.

FOOTNOTES
_______________________________________________

1 Reuben Archer Torrey, What The Bible Teaches. 1 Edition (Whitaker House, 2004), Book 3, Chapter 7, pg. 3. Google Books Edition, accessed June 4, 2015.

 

EXPERIENCE THE POWER OF JESUS CHRIST: PLEASE JOIN US FOR “THE PILGRIMAGE TO PENTECOST”

Acts 1:8 (NKJV) – Jesus said, “But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

What is the Pilgrimage to Pentecost? This 50 Days of Prayer” was established by our Presiding Bishop Charles E. Blake, Sr. in order to empower the saints of the Church Of God In Christ to fervently seek the Power of God in a 50-day period of consecration and sanctification, from Easter (or “Resurrection Sunday”), through the Day of Pentecost.

What is every member of the Church Of God In Christ requested to do?  For the next 50 days, we are asked by our Presiding Bishop to take 11 minutes out of our daily prayer time to focus on the prayer requests provided in the devotional reading.

It is our hope and prayer that: 

(1) every member of the Church Of God In Christ who has not been filled with the gift of the Holy Spirit would be filled, according to Acts 2:4; and that    

(2) every believer who is already filled would receive a “refilling” of the Holy Spirit, according to Acts 4:31 and Ephesians 5:18.  

The  dates for the 2014 Pilgrimage are:

April 20 through June 8, 2014

This Pilgrimage is to benefit YOU! We pray that this event impacts your life, and that praying for empowerment in the Spirit becomes a lifetime endeavor. 

DOWNLOAD the free Pilgrimage To Pentecost Guidebook here.

To get your copy of the Pilgrimage To Pentecost Devotional, please click here to order online, or call (877) 746-8578.

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