INTRO - This week TJC departs from the usual DBO format, of an anchor verse and an author’s expansion. We want to get deeper into the bible and ACTs - for we are the church that was started and recorded for us to be in. The authors this week, will be sharing what it might have been like to be there as the church was created, and sharing that experience back to Theophilus (whom Luke addressed the 28 chapters of ACTs). They will then reflect on what it might mean today in 2023.
Dear Theophilus, we are writing to share more with you following Luke’s letters to you about Jesus’ lifetime and how our church was born. Luke’s last letter, now called Acts 28 ended unusually; how Paul was sharing the good news boldly and never hesitating even while prisoned but not hindered. We, as followers of the Way, have picked up that same commission.
We are going to share some stories about how crazy this has been seeing our friends persecuted, some killed, some of the challenges hearing the Holy Spirit to help us work through the teachings of Jesus and the old laws Moses gave us. There has been incredible acceptance of Christ and riots as well, and wow the miracles are incredible. We are always smiling and celebrating through it all, despite our own challenges. We are striving to grab hold of these events and lessons so others can experience it anew in their life.
2023 Can you imagine Paul and Luke after the upper room experience of being filled with the Holy Spirit, literally seeing flames of fire appear on everyone’s head? Now it’s our turn, filled with the Holy Spirit and their lessons, to be even bolder and joyfully share the good news in our churches that have exploded all over the globe. Maybe that is why Luke finished his letters in Chapter 28 like he did.
Our unending battle order- like Paul we are to be bold and proclaim the kingdom of God and teach what Christ shared with us boldly and without any hindrance. Your first ministry is in your home with your spouse and family. Tonight at dinner go around the table and share a lesson from Jesus that you are trying to work out in your own life.. ACTS did not end - we are simply its next chapter (29) - do your part well.