Summary: We learn from this sermon what it means to be a bold witness, what bold witnesses can expect to encounter, and what God does through bold witnesses.
We recently had an encounter in our church’s regular weekly outreach program where one
of the families we visited accused us of harassment. We weren’t guilty, of course. But I
still had to spend some very anxious moments at the local police station trying to sort out
all of the facts and emotions involved.
Is this the type of thing that believers can expect to follow faithful evangelistic efforts?
Absolutely! Just look at what Peter and John had to deal with (and some of the other
apostles). Let’s look at this idea by seeing...
1. WHAT IS A BOLD WITNESS?
*One who ...
a. is Spirit filled (Acts 4:8)
-You can’t share with others what you don’t possess!
-Do you have The Holy Spirit resident in your life?
-Are you born-again?
-Christian, are you yielded to the work of The Spirit
b. has their facts straight (vss. 8b-12)
-in Peter’s discourse here we learn that he had good theology
-do you know why you believe what you believe?
c. is courageous (vs. 13)
-we must be respectful of all but Respect only One
-believers’ participation in evangelism is very similar to the Jews under
*once freed from sin’s bondage, you embark on a whole new way
of living that is peculiar and scary (like the Jews freed from
*your new way of living requires you to live by faith and not sight
*part of faith living is depending on God to make you bold and
courageous as you share your new found faith with others
*look at the number of times the exhortation “be bold and
courageous” appears in Joshua 1!
d. is ordinary (Acts 4:13)
-you don’t have to be dynamic to be used, you simply have to be available
-we don’t have to do magnificent things, we have to do common things
e. takes time to be with Jesus (Acts 4:13)
-this cannot be overstated! We must spend time with Jesus daily by
personal study of The Word and prayer
f. witnesses by providing evidence (Acts 4:14)
-the healed man was standing right there! The evidence was right before
-we, too, can provide the evidence of what God has done for each of us
-folks may refute our words, but they cannot refute the evident changes
that God has made in our yielded lives
g. obeys God rather than men (Acts 4:19)
-see the book of Esther and a man named Mordecai for the greatest
example of human allegiance to God rather than men (and God’s
opinion of and reaction to that allegiance)!
h. can’t help but speaking of what they’ve seen and heard! (Acts 4:19-20)
-if we are taking the necessary time to be with Jesus, we won’t be able to
keep it to ourselves either!
2. WHAT CAN BOLD WITNESSES EXPECT?
a. Persecution (Acts 6:9)
-but look what happens to God’s people in verse 10!
-it was persecution that ultimately brought about the fulfillment of Jesus’
Great Commission as found in Acts 1:1-11
*the church didn’t spread out into Judea and Samaria until
-Jesus warned....John 15:20-22
b. Arrest (Acts 5:18-19)
-but look what happens to God’s people...freedom!
c. Threats (Acts 5:33)
-see also 2 Corinthians 11:22f
-but in Psalm 23 we are promised that while our enemies may gather, all
they can do is snarl and growl!
d. Beatings (Acts 5:40)
-these may be physical and/or emotional
-what must our response be to these beatings?
*REJOICE!!! And continuing on!!! (See Acts 5:41-42)
3. WHAT DOES GOD DO THROUGH BOLD WITNESSES?
a. He grows the individuals personally
b. He grows the local church numerically
-Acts 2:47, 4:4, 6:7, 9:31, 11:24
c. He grows believers’ enthusiasm and joy emphatically
-Acts 4:23-31, 5:41
d. He grows The Kingdom geographically