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<< Discover the Book, with Dr. John Barnett

Discover the Book - Dec. 3, 2008

  • 2008 Dec 03
  • COMMENTS
 

Seeing Christ in the Book of Acts

 

 

There are the two themes of the Book of Acts: first, Christians in the 1st Century were tuned in to Christ. Secondly, all they needed was the power to come on and out came the message! Isn't that what we need to ask ourselves as we study this book ? Are we tuned in to Christ? Are we plugged into the power source?

 

To show you what I mean, look at Acts 1:8

“But you shall receive power (they were plugged in to the power source) when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me (they were tuned in to Christ) in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

 

And again in Acts 5:20

“Go, stand in the temple (by the power of being plugged into the Holy Spirit) and speak to the people all the words of this life (they were tuned into Jesus Christ).”

 

Welcome now to the 44th Book of God's Word. The theme of ACTS may be stated as “Christ our Mission and Message” (Acts 1:8)

 

An outline of the book of acts

 

This book is the bridge taking Christ to the whole world. In it we see the lessons Christ taught His disciples in secret now proclaimed in Holy Spirit empowered boldness. The key verse outlines the book:

witnesses in Jerusalem (1-8:3);

Judea and Samaria (8:4-12:25);

and to the ends of the earth (13-28).

 

The Gospels are the record of the Message of Christ, the Book of Acts is a record of the Message distributed and the Epistles are the content of the Message. Within Acts we find the background introductions to epistles of I and II Corinthians, Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians and Philemon.

 

The Book of Acts starts atop the Mount of Olives as Luke, inspired by the Holy Spirit takes us from the expectant faces of the disciples lifted Heavenward as their Risen Savior ascends triumphantly to the Right Hand of the Father to the Apostle Paul in prison in Rome and spends his days teaching God's Word!

 

What is in between? No less than an astounding record of a group of people who were full of a message they just had to share. And an equally astonishing record of the supernatural empowerment they experienced.

 

God’s People were Plugged into the power supply

 

In Acts, more than any other book of God's Word we find the vivid record of the empowering of the Holy Spirit. In fact there are over 50 different accounts of the work of the Holy Spirit. Let me highlight a few:

 

1.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that the disciples witness for Christ with boldness (1:8; 2:4; 4:8, 31; 5:32; 6:10, 13:9; 19:6).

2.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit persons were equipped for ministry (2:17, 18; 4:8; 6:3, 5; 9:17; 11:28; 19:6; 20:28: 21:4, 11).

3.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that joy and comfort in the spirit come to faithful servants of the Lord (7:55; 8:39; 9:31; 11:24; 13:52; 20:23)

4.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that God gives direction through the inspired Scripture (1:2, 16:28:25), and 5 Spirit-filled persons sensitive to His voice receive special guidance in crucial situations (8:29, 39: 10:19; 11:12, 28; 13:2, 4:16:6 7; 21;4, 11). Not only does He help in making decisions,

5.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that truth was confirmed to the hearts of the brethren ( 5:32; 15:8, 28).

6.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that matters of Church discipline and administration were carried out ( 5:3, 9; 6:3, 5: 7:51: 15:28; 20:28).

7.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that the breakthrough of the Gospel to the Samaritans occurred ( 8:15 17 18, 19) and the Gentiles at Caesarea (10:19, 44, 45, 47, 11:12, 15,16; 15:8).

8.                  It is by the power of the Holy Spirit that the church was sending out the first missionaries at Antioch (13:2, 4) and It is by the power of the Holy Spirit who assists in various ways, all through the expansion of the church, to the uttermost parts of the earth (13:9, 52; 16:6, 7; 19:2, 6; 20:23, 28; 21:4; 28:25).

 

For more from Discover the Book Ministries, please visit  discoverthebook.org.

 

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