That first Pentecost was the biggest construction project in history. In a matter of seconds, God used a mighty wind to implode the Tower of Babel that humanity built and established his Church atop its ruins.
Centuries before, the survivors of the Great Flood took it on themselves to build their own sanctuary so they could be in one place and speak their own language. They felt it was time to control their own destiny. As the Book of Genesis reports, God shut those plans down and scattered them to different lands. They ended up speaking different tongues and espousing different truths.
Pentecost represents God’s call to come home. Jesus suffered and died to repair the division not only between all people but between all people and God.
In place of the Tower of Babel the Holy Spirit filled Jesus’ disciples so they could build a church with one room big enough to shelter all God’s people. Today’s reading from Acts describes people from different lands hearing the disciples speaking in their own tongues. In fact, what Jesus did through the Gospel was teach all people one universal language. His language: The Truth.
The Book of Wisdom states: “The Spirit of the Lord has filled the whole world and that which contains all things understands what is said.”
In today’s Gospel, Jesus makes way for the Holy Spirit to carry on his role as our advocate, or defender, before God. Jesus made sure we remembered that language of truth he taught us, and today it continues to echo from the church he built atop the ruins of Babel. That truth is the acquittal that sets us free.