It looked like someone had been hitting the wine flasks a little early this morning.
I slapped the shoulder of the man standing next to me.
"Can you believe these people?"
The man shook his scraggly-haired head. "No. What do you think is going on with them?"
"I think they are filled with new wine - nice and drunk."
The other man raised a bushy eyebrow. "Really? It's only nine in the morning!"
An older man piped into the conversation. "I don't think they are drunk. This looks like some sort of sign. There are so many different people here, and they are each sharing their stories in our native languages!"
The man with the bushy eyebrows nodded. "Yes! I have studied several different languages, and each one is being spoken perfectly."
I snorted in disbelief. "What is wrong with you men? They are drunk and speaking gibberish, for crying out loud!"
A man started shouting, trying to be heard above the crowd's roar. We stop arguing, and I strain, trying to hear what he's saying.
"Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel."
Based on Acts 2:5-13
"And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, 'What does this mean?' But others mocking said, 'They are filled with new wine.' But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them: 'Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words. For these people are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel." Acts 2:12-16
I'm always amazed at how quick people are to jump to such a stupid and disbelieving answer. And sadly, you see this type of first response all throughout the Bible. It happens over and over. It kind of drives me crazy.
It also drives me crazy that this is often my first response.
All these people had been around. They had heard the rumors about Jesus. Some of them had seen Jesus' ministry. They had been apart of His death. They had heard about the resurrection. Some of these people may have experienced a healing and the power of God. I daresay some of these people might have even claimed to be followers of Jesus.
And yet they didn't have a clue what was happening. Instead, so many of them jumped to a horrible conclusion.
"Jesus said to him, 'Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.'" John 20:29
"Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen." Hebrews 11:1
Do we really understand what these verses are saying? Do we really live them in our lives? It means when things get crazy, we don't jump to the worst conclusion. It means when God is doing a new thing, that we don't assume the people are drunk. It means that despite all the unknowns that come from walking with God, we trust Him regardless.
I don't want to be like one of those people. I hate jumping to the worldly answers. More then anything, I want to be like Peter, standing up and saying, "This is the power of God, people!" For that to be the case, it means you and I have to stop trying to explain everything. It means we really do have to put our faith in The One we can't see. It means we trade crazy world answers for being the ones who look crazy for God. And I'd rather be that any day.
V. Joy Palmer