(Part 36)




April 8, 2013


Today’s readings:

Acts 4:23-31

Psalm 2:1-9



Awesome is the power of the Holy Spirit, who fills God’s people to enable them to proclaim the gospel. “As they prayed, the place where they were gathered shook, and they were all filled with the holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness.” (Acts 4:31). A requirement for an evangelizer is boldness. A virtue or fruit for one filled with the Spirit is boldness.

Faith works wonders. Faith in Jesus allows Jesus himself to act in and through a disciple, “and signs and wonders are done through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” (Acts 4:30b).

This is why evangelizers can speak and act boldly. This is despite opposition and persecution. When faced with such, we just turn to Jesus. We report the situation to Jesus. We ask Jesus to intervene. We leave it up to Jesus to act. “And now, Lord, take note of their threats, and enable your servants to speak your word with all boldness” (Acts 4:29). God went to great lengths to win salvation for all. When the proclamation and proclaimers of that salvation are threatened, will God not act?


Powerful forces came against Jesus and then the disciples at that time–”Herod and Pontius Pilate, together with the Gentiles and the peoples of Israel” (Acts 4:27b). Today powerful forces come against Jesus’ disciples and evangelizers–the US government under Obama, the European Union, elements of the United Nations, etc. As then, “the Gentiles rage and the …. kings of the earth took their stand and the princes gathered together against the Lord and against his anointed.” (Acts 4:25b-26). What then are we to do, in the face of tremendous power and resources hurled against us?

First, we stand on God’s plan for the salvation of the world and our part in that plan. This is about God’s eternal plan of restoration, since after the fall in Eden. We are privileged to be part of that plan. We simply “do what (God’s) hand and will had long ago planned to take place.” (Acts 4:28).

Second, we turn to God who is able to protect and empower us. We acknowledge His dominion and power to do what He intends to do. “And when they heard it, they raised their voices to God with one accord and said, ‘Sovereign Lord, maker of heaven and earth and the sea and all that is in them’” (Acts 4:24).

Third, having turned to God, we must not be afraid. They indeed are powerful, but they are nothing compared to God. “The one enthroned in heaven laughs; the Lord derides them” (Ps 2:4).

Fourth, we then look to take it all. We serve a victorious King. Our faith will work wonders. We simply ask God for His help, His guidance, His wisdom, His power. It is after all His work. “Ask it of me, and I will give you the nations as your inheritance, and, as your possession, the ends of the earth.” (Ps 2:8). If we BE.LI.EV.E, our work of evangelization will indeed be massive and worldwide, and our work of renewal will reach the ends of the earth.


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