Acts 2:42-47 Day By Day

Eagerly sharing one another’s company and learning from the apostles

We witnessed the birth of the church in our last time together. Today we get to see how it is continuing to grow and what it looks like.

The first thing I need to do though is to refine my language. The church wasn’t an it or a thing or even a place. It was made up of each and every individual who repented of their sins and accepted Jesus as their Savior. It was a living, breathing and growing body of believers. So when I say “it” I’m referring to everyone in that body collectively. I’m sure most of you understood what I meant in the beginning but I wanted to remove any doubt.

This body of believers was growing daily. The first day it grew exponentially! From 120 to over 3,000! It didn’t keep up these numbers every day but there were new believers joining them every day. God’s Spirit was drawing them. The people’s testimony and the miracles being done couldn’t be dismissed. Everyone was watching what was growing from the Root of Jesse. From the fulfillment of the promise. From the resurrected Jesus. Read more »

Acts 2:14-41 Hear These Words

The “Fisher of men’s” first catch

We are bearing witness to Peter’s first sermon to the new church. Happy Birthday to the church!

We read the last time how those around the newly empowered disciples of Jesus were blown away with what they were hearing. They were hearing the gospel spoken in their own tongue by men unfamiliar with their language. They either marveled at this feat or mocked them as drunk. We also thought about why the difference in the hearer. My theory is that those who weren’t open to the Spirit’s message didn’t hear it like the others did. They only heard gibberish. So now Peter gets up and speaks in the common tongue to set the record straight. Read more »

Acts 2:1-13 Fire From Heaven

 Fire is on the inside now.

It’s TIME! Well, not for Jesus to sit on the throne of Israel but for the Holy Spirit to come and dwell with man. For His presence to fill our lives!

All 120 of those who were gathered and had been praying in the upper room received this gift. It wasn’t reserved for just Jesus’ original twelve disciples. The lowliest to the greatest were FILLED with the Holy Spirit. They didn’t get a measure of His presence based on their ranking within the group or their predicted potential to spreading the gospel. They ALL received the full measure of God’s Holy Spirit.

The Holy Spirit used each of them too. HE gave them the words to say. He granted them the ability to speak fluently in languages they had not learned. But they had to open their mouths and let His words free. I imagine this was like fire in their bones. They HAD to speak. They couldn’t hold it in. Have you ever been in this state? I have felt His power burning for freedom in the words of the Holy Spirit but I have no idea what those words translated to. Only He knows! But they moved the hand of God! Read more »

Acts 1:12-26 Becoming Twelve Again

They let God lead the way

We join the disciples right after Jesus’ leaves them. They heed the men in white and head back down the mountain. Jesus instructed them to stay in Jerusalem until they received the Holy Spirit so they head back to the room they spent their last night together in. The “upper room.” Here they will wait for Jesus’ promise.

I find it very ironic that the very thing Jesus asked Peter, James and John to do in the garden with Him is what they are clinging to while waiting for His promise. “All these with one accord were devoting themselves to prayer” (verse 14). There were about 120 people in this group praying day in and day out. Jesus’ closest disciples couldn’t stay awake and pray one hour that night but now they are praying for days on end. Read more »

Acts 1:6-11 Be My Witnesses

Father, I’m coming Home!

We join Jesus and ALL His followers as He is saying His final farewell. They don’t realize this is His last time with them but He does. I wonder how different the conversation would have been if they had known too.

Luke tells us that “when they had come together” they brought with them their expectations again of Jesus setting up His Kingdom here on earth. “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom of Israel?” (verse 6). They still didn’t understand all of Jesus’ plans. They didn’t have the Holy Spirit living in them to open their eyes yet. They had been waiting, watching and working (as best they could) to see Jesus take the throne of Israel. They knew the promises but didn’t understand their implications. They couldn’t see the “big picture” yet.

Their question reminds me so much of children on a long trip. The parents understand the concept of time, distance and speed. They can calculate how long it will be before reaching their destination. But to the child, the only thing they know is they want the end to be here NOW! “Is it time yet?” They don’t watch the road signs and calculate how much longer. They rely on the parents to let them know when, but not without a few reminders that they are waiting being thrown in. “Are we there yet? How much longer?” Read more »