Have you read the book of Acts lately? If not, allow me to commend it to you. It is an exciting view into the working of the Lord in the early days of the Church. Luke does a superb job of recording the outworking of God’s hand, and he includes for us a few lengthy proclamations of the good news of Christ as given by Peter, Paul, and others. Probably the most amazing part of the book is the holistic view we gain into the hand of God at work as He begins to move among His people.
When you read Acts, read it as you would any book. Allow yourself to become caught up in the story. Let the characters endear themselves to you. You may have experienced this in a novel or a long running T.V. series where you are sad to see it end because you will miss the characters on some level. The book of Acts is powerful, and the people God used to do amazing things appear mighty in themselves yet proclaim, “We also are men, of like nature with you.” (Acts 14:15).
This book gives us a window to peer into the power and control of our almighty God. It is comforting, motivating, and extremely informative. If you imagine these things happening in today’s world you will find yourself thinking, “this is unbelievable.” This is what many said. Luke explains that large numbers of people believed and were counted among the Church. He also tells us large numbers found the story to be ludicrous remaining under the condemnation of their sin.
As you read it through this time, may I suggest that you not be looking for life lessons and for ways that you might change, but that you simply sit back and watch the power of God. Notice how the the Gospel moves, “in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth,” as Christ said it would in Acts 1:8. Be amazed that the one who promised to save us has the power to change hearts and minds as He pleases. Stand in awe not at the power of Peter, Paul, Barnabas, and others to withstand persecution and punishment, but be amazed that our Lord was able to help them continue to speak His word “with all boldness” as they asked (Acts 4:29) and able to move in them to stand strong in the face of adversity that would crush the will of any man.
To the Christian this book screams, “Rejoice! Your Lord is all powerful and you have nothing to fear.” To those who have yet to believe upon the name of the Lord Jesus Christ this book demands repentance. It shows the folly of our world is no different today than it was 2000 years ago. Powerful men and ideologies seek to sieze the hearts and minds of the masses and fight earnestly to keep them. Rest assured, though, as Acts makes very clear, the message of Scripture is true. Jesus is the Christ, the chosen one. He is the Messiah prophesied in ages past, and He will return to gather the elect to Himself. Read and enjoy the book of Acts and let it move you to a more fervent passion to honor the Lord with obedience.