Have you ever found yourself in a cross-cultural situation that was difficult to handle? The awkwardness, the inability to communicate, the misunderstandings ... don't you think it would be easier to share the truth of the gospel with people if we didn't have to overcome these differences?
But ... did you know these cross-cultural barriers were God's idea? We read about this in Genesis 11. Humankind was enjoying amazing progress in their city called Babel -- so amazing that God Himself took notice. Seeing that "nothing they plan will be impossible for them", God carried out a drastic response: He scattered the people of earth all over the planet and confused their languages. Berlitz, Rosetta Stone, and your junior high Spanish teacher might be happy about this, but for most of us, it has become quite a hindrance.
Then, after His resurrection, Jesus tells His disciples to go into all the world, be witnesses of His life, and communicate all of His teachings! I can imagine one of the disciples thinking, "Lord, it would have been a LOT easier if you hadn't done that whole Babel thing!"
But, as He always does, God had a plan. A plan to bring His creation back together. A plan to have all mankind centered not in themselves, but in divine truth. And this plan would have its inauguration on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2), when one of the greatest, and certainly most influential, cross-cultural events in the history of the world took place. The fruit of that Pentecost Day has a crowd of suburban Arizonans in 2019 worshiping a Jewish carpenter from AD 30! And now, like beyond what the people experienced in Babel, over two billion people live in the land of endless possibilities! ... not in a godless, self-promoting way like Babel, but in a gospel-land where "What is impossible with man is possible with God!" (Luke 18:27).
That happened on Pentecost. Come, let's celebrate it this Sunday!
2 John 12,
Pastor Bill Hartley