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May | May 25, 2018
Friday, May 25, 2018
Acts 1:8 gives us a clear outline and title for the book. Let me read it from the Williams translation. “You are going to receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you, and you must be witnesses for me in Jerusalem and all over Judea and Samaria, and to the very ends of the earth.” The focus or title would be: Spirit directed and empowered witness. The outline amplifying this focus would be: the Church’s impact in Jerusalem, chapters 1-7; in Judea and Samaria, chapter 8; to the rest of the world, chapters 9-28.
In Jerusalem the disciples experienced a mighty work of the Holy Spirit in their lives, resulting in a powerful witness that turned Jerusalem up-side down. God allowed persecution. As Christians moved out of Jerusalem to avoid persecution they shared their experience and God’s Word. As a result God’s plan expanded. Then, it took God’s further miraculous work, in and through Peter and Paul, and through others, including pagans, before God’s plan began to be fulfilled.
Two applications to be made from this summary would be, our witness must be Spirit directed and empowered. In addition, if we don’t obey, God will find a way, even using those who oppose the truth, to make us willing to obey, and/or do it another way. This is painful, and would be unnecessary, if we would only trust and obey.
What an inspiring story this is. It should encourage us to enlist in this movement which continues throughout the world today.