Summary: Too often we ask God why don’t I have this or that, why is this happening, why, why, why. Instead we should be asking what God can you do through me? God answers with the voice like many waters, You Shall Be My Witnesses.
Vance Havner a very practical down home preacher said, “One day of green pastures and still waters is followed by dark valleys and miry swamps and a thousand whys lie unanswered, tabled for the future.”
When it comes to unanswered whys from God we all too often ask more whys instead of what!
In Acts chapter 1 the disciples of Jesus were asking why questions before Jesus ascended into heaven.
Acts 1.6 “Lord is it at this time you are restoring the Kingdom of Israel?”
Let me translate for you.
1) Lord you promised your Kingdom would come and Rome would fall is it to happen now?
2) Lord we are the seed of Abraham, decendants of David when do we take charge?
3) When do we get our ruling seats in the Kingdom (remember Peter and James mom)
4) When do we get our rooms in the Temple.
Jesus responds (pay close attention) Read Acts 1.7 but
I believe Jesus was saying, “You r not asking the right Questions!!!”
It is for God the father to Fulfill prophecy in His time.”
What should they have asked? Most of us remember or have learned about JFK. Ask not what your country can do for you ask what you can do for your country!
Jesus, “Ask not what God can do for you ask what you can do for God!”
This is the setup for the Jesus’ Last words (significant) before His ascension.
Read verse 8.
I. To be powerful witnesses we must be plugged in to God.
A) Today’s World
1) Laptops, PDA’s, Cell Phones
2) Got to have it plugged into a power source
3) Illustration: IV Pump – Thought it was plugged in but it began beeping If you are not plugged into God you batteries will run out.
B) Today’s Christian (has got to be plugged in)
1) If you instruments are not plugged in they are useless pieces of
2) If we are not plugged into God by way of the power outlet of the Holy Spirit we become useless instruments.
C) Why did Jesus tell them they were to be plugged in?
1) They had a hard job ahead, they could only do it in the power of God.
2) They would be tested by many difficult challenges, including death, they needed the peace of God’s spirit.
We also need the same Power, and Peace and assurance that comes by way of God’s Holy spirit.
Why? We too have a tough task before us.
John 1.12 “but as many as received Him to them He gave power (the right) to become the children of God.”
As soon as we receive Jesus we receive the Holy Spirit.
As soon as we receive the Holy Spirit we are to be witnesses of what God has done in our lives.
II. Definition of witness
A) Greek martus or martur
1) Most often we see the word witness 29 times
2) It means: To affirm that one has seen or heard or experienced something.
a) Acts 4.18 commanded to stop witnessing Jesus
b) Acts 4.19 “But Peter and John answered and said to them, “whether it is right in the sight of God to give heed to you rather than to God, you be the judge.
20 “for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
a) The two Greek words here used carry the idea that they literally could not stop telling about Jesus. The holy spirit Had so moved them by what they saw they were compelled to speak of Jesus.
Luke 14.23 “Master said to the slave, “Go out and compel them to come in” (Wedding feast)
3) Vance Havener “We do not have a secret to be hidden but a story to be heralded.”
1) Definition of Herald: a person who announces important news (good news?); “a chieftain had a herald who announced his arrival with a trumpet.”
2) The gospel is good news blow your trumpet.
B) Translated martyr
1) The same word used of Stephen when he was stoned
2) The ultimate sacrifice for the spreading of the good news!
a) We need to recognize that we too are called to die for our faith. (take up your cross)
b) To die to our fears, desires, designs.
c) A witness or martyr is to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.
1) Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life
2) Are you sacrificing so that someone can hear the truth?
C) Righteous record
1) Another way to translate is to bear record
2) We are to be like a filing cabinet. People see the record of god’s love when they draw files from us.
So what do they see coming out of your filing cabinent?