Acts 2. 5 – 13

I can tell you, it caused quite a stir.  Religious Jewish people had gathered in Jerusalem from all over the world for the Feast of Weeks. When they heard a hundred and twenty people praising God in many different languages, they dropped everything and stopped to listen.  As they listened, each one could hear his own language being spoken by uneducated peasants from an obscure region of the country, untutored labourers and fishermen speaking the languages of the Far East, of Persia and beyond, speaking Greek and Arabic, and the languages of Egypt and Libya.

There were visitors here who had been born Jewish, and others who had converted to Judaism, all hearing God eloquently praised in fluent speech delivered in languages that these unschooled country folk could scarcely be expected to have heard before, let alone learned.  They pressed in to see and hear this strange phenomenon, touching those who were speaking, pulling at their robes, even turning them round to see what was the source of this clever trick.  But no magician could be found controlling them.

“Even women!” murmured one elderly gentleman in wonder. For indeed, illiterate women were speaking as if they had great book learning and extensive travel under their belts, and yet everyone knew it was not possible.  And so the more the assembled crowd observed and pondered, the more their amazement grew.

Those who didn’t care to question it too deeply resorted to mocking, accusing them of being drunk. But meanwhile this torrent of praise, beyond their own words and needing new words to express it, continued to flow out of the followers of Jesus, and no curiosity or mocking could extinguish or even diminish their joy.

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