Summary: This is the fifth time the Great Commission is given to us in the pages of the New Testament. Say this with me: I am made for more than watching. We were made for more than two cars and satellite TV. The enemy of mission-minded Christian is to live comfortably.
This is the fifth time the Great Commission is given to us in the pages of the New Testament. Say this with me: I am made for more than watching. We were made for more than two cars and satellite TV. The enemy of mission-minded Christian is to live comfortably.
“In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now. So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:6–8)
1. My Mind is Convinced Jesus Has Risen
“He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.” (Acts 1:3)
I want proof! There was only one witness to the Book of Mormon when it was written. There was only one witness to the book of the Qur’an. But forty different people write the Bible under the direction of the Holy Spirit. Imagine the coordination of getting forty people together to write on the same script! Speaking of proof, 500 people saw the risen Jesus at the same time. It’s not just intellectual proofs for the nature of the Bible is alive. The proofs of the Bible transform.
A retired pastor talked about a man from his church in Virginia some forty-plus years ago. When he got there, as far as he knew, virtually none of the church’s officers had finished high school. Especially the males in that particular blue-collar, southern community felt “readin’ and writin’” were feminine. The pastor remembered a man who came to Christ just before I got there. He had been an alcoholic and had a career as an army sergeant. He was a tough, rough person but he became a Christian, and this man who had only finished eighth grade became hungry to study the Word of God. He could barely read, and he would spend hours reading a passage, having to look everything up in the dictionary. After a while, he came to the pastor and said, “I want to teach.” I said, “I don’t know how you’re going to do that.” He said, “Give me a chance.” So this rough and tough former army sergeant was given a Sunday school class. His wife said absolutely for sure that her husband spent forty-five hours a week preparing his lesson. He would spend hours just reading with the dictionary through the Sunday school teacher’s guide. Then he would write out what he was going to say. He’d take the tape to some friends, and they would listen. He would say, “Now am I pronouncing these words right?” and “What does this word mean?” What did he turn out to be? A good teacher… in the words of the pastor, “nothing spectacular.” Even a mediocre teacher, but it was unbelievable to see what happened in this man’s life, and he changed.
Press pause on that story for a moment. But don’t you see what the proof of Jesus’ resurrection can do? The book is alive as it changes illiterate alcoholics into men who strive to know God’s Word. The Bible is alive and it has eyes: as you read it, it reads you. Let’s say this together: I am Convinced Jesus Has Risen
2. My Life is Empowered by Jesus’ Spirit
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)
These few brave followers of Jesus have been through boot camp; they’re ready for battle.
2.1 Waiting on Jesus’ Power in Your Life
At a nearby airport, a friend overheard someone who had been waiting for their flight. They had been waiting since 5 am. But they didn’t realize their flight was 5 pm! They came at the wrong time and mistook am for pm. Can you imagine sitting around for another twelve hours waiting for your flight?