“And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting. And there appeared unto them cloven tongues like as of fire, and it sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
Commentary: The day of Pentecost was a day that was commemorated as when the apostles officially began ministry, especially on their way to Jerusalem. Gathered together were the apostles in full agreement in one place of fellowship – not a church – but a person’s home in the upper chamber.
Literally, a sound from Heaven enthralled them as if a downburst of wind tore through the building. The apostles had felt a different, unique presence there. Cloven tongues that appeared to look like fire, and it looked like it sat upon each of them. This is because when flames spread, they look like tongues; therefore, it is to mean an emblem of many or diverse languages. James calls the tongue a fire (James 3:6). With it sitting upon each of them, it is believed to symbolize the continuance of grace and gifting unto them to be equipped for ministry.
The apostles and the disciples, and anyone else there, were all filled with the Holy Ghost and spoke with other tongues (meaning they spoke in an unknown language in a spiritual experience), because the Holy Ghost spoke in and through them. They were given the Holy Ghost, the Comforter, as promised (John 14:16), which was to enable them much better for the ministry. They are experiencing what every person should be experiencing when given Salvation of the Lord Jesus Christ.