Summary: A TIME OF PERSUASION,A TIME OF PREPARATION
EYE WITNESS NEWS
Profile of a Witness
Acts 1:8 " . . . and you shall be My witnesses"
What does this text: "Ye shall be witnesses to Me!" evoke in your
thinking? What is a proper response?
A. IT SAYS TO ME THAT I PERSONALLY, AND WE, AS PEOPLE CALLED
NAZARENES, NEED TO TAKE THESE WORDS TO HEART
1. Early on in my Christian walk I got the message that I was not
a complete Christian unless and until I was also a witnessing
Christian. Just about all my Christian life I have had an annoying
feeling that I should be a better personal witness of the grace of
B. BUT IT ALSO INVITES ME TO SEE HOW THE PEOPLE TO WHOM JESUS WAS
SPEAKING DIRECTLY, AT THAT TIME, UNDERSTOOD AND CARRIED OUT HIS
1. The context of this text is the end of that period between the
first Easter and the Ascension and Pentecost with the outpouring of
the Spirit. That was a very important time for the disciples.
Several questions come to mind: [After the death and resurrection
of Jesus things were decidedly different. It was not merely business
"Where did Jesus go at night to sleep?" or, "Where did Jesus go
when He disappeared from their sight?" I know that speculation is all
too easy. But several things are apparent:
Why, do you suppose, was there a period of 40 days between the
Resurrection and the Ascension?
Why, again, were there 10 more days until the descent of the Holy
Spirit at Pentecost?
What part do the Old Testament figures of Passover and Pentecost
have in the scheme of salvation? It certainly was more than
coincidence that these significant events fell on those significant
I. A TIME OF PERSUASION
Of what were the disciples witness, relative to Jesus?
A. Old Testament fulfillment:
1. In the matter of the calendar itself:
JESUS THE PASSOVER
Lets take that last question first: From our vantage point we
see that the Old Testament holy days found fulfillment in the Person
and Ministry of the Savior.
Cynics would say that Jesus was the supreme opportunist. They
would say that He sought to fill out the prophecies of the Old
Jesus filled out the meaning of the Old Testament: Do you
understand Passover? Divine intervention in behalf of helpless people
who cry for deliverance. Beginning an Exodus that was to climax in a
The planting of a Seed... JESUS THE FIRST-FRUIT, OR HARVEST Do
you understand Pentecost? The "Seed" planted in the ground brought
forth 3,000 souls fifty days later; The first harvest celebrated; and
also the giving of the Law on Sinai;
B. Personal encounter/ spiritual revelation: The disciples met the
Risen Savior, and He revealed Himself to them.
II. A TIME OF PREPARATION
A. They were not to leave Jerusalem until they had received the
B. This involved ten days of intensive prayer.
C. This also involved
III. A TIME OF PROCLAMATION - [Conclusion:]
A. The overwhelming sense of joy that accompanied the knowledge that
they were NOT left orphaned; they were indwelt by the Spirit of their
Savior-- THIS was the thing that powered their witness.
Their battle cry was, "The LORD is risen!"
We must have this in order to be witnesses, and not hear-say
1. A personal encounter of revelation: (not enlightenment only;
that is not enough. but God-revealed reality. We must know, be
persuaded that God has raised Jesus from the dead. The resurrection
is the dynamo that makes everything about the Christian faith genuine.
There is nothing wrong with becoming a seeker. If you are not
satisfied, ask God to help you look within. Come away with reality.
If your heart condemns you, God is greater than your heart and knows
2. An increasing joy and love for the Savior. This will be
"felt," for want of a better word. Deeply satisfying. It will
resonate with others who love Jesus, too. The greatest family on all
the earth is the family of God. This love will respond to the
Spirit’s prompting to go. (Philip)
3. This witness will be both conscious and unconscious. There
must be a congruence of the unconscious and the conscious witness.
When what we say and how we live are in disagreement people will
always finally believe the way we live. But when both coincide there
will be effective witness.
a) they took knowledge of them that they had been with Jesus
b) we ought to obey God rather than man!
4. There is nothing wrong with organized effort in witnessing:
I have attended special seminars on witnessing, and have undergone
intensive on-the-job training; and I have had concentrated weekend
efforts and have led small groups in witnessing. Perhaps if God so