Scriptures: Acts 2:36-37
The message of Pentecost is the same today as it was on the first Pentecost, and the message is: that God gives everyone a chance for a turnaround. A turnaround is the act of turning about and facing or moving in the opposite direction.
The first to experience a turnaround was the messenger Peter who promised to follow Jesus even if it meant death. We find him cowering in fear when a servant girl identifies him as a follower of Jesus. Then he stands to preach the first message of the New Testament church and Peter knew the danger of preaching Jesus!
Peter had a turnaround! He was heading the direction towards Jesus! He had to preach the name of Jesus speaking with power, authority and without fear. This kind of turnaround occurs when a life is touched by the Holy Spirit.
The people heard Peter's message and they too wanted a turnaround! "Men and Brethren, what shall we do?" They were pricked in their hearts and deeply moved. They wanted to move in the opposite direction towards Jesus. Peter responded: "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost."
Repentance is a turnaround: the turning from sin. Its changing the direction of our lives and turning to Christ. Baptism is the washing away the stain of sin and taking on a new identity in Christ. The gift of the Holy Ghost endues us with the same power which transformed Peter's life. The same message today: God offers every a chance for a turnaround!