Credit: Men’s Life Bloomington – Paul Konstanski
In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach 2 until the day he was taken up to heaven, after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles he had chosen. 3 After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. 4 On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. 5 For John baptized with[a] water, but in a few days you will be baptized with[b] the Holy Spirit.”
6 Then they gathered around him and asked him, “Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7 He said to them: “It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
9 After he said this, he was taken up before their very eyes, and a cloud hid him from their sight.
- Have you ever thought about the “but” at the beginning of verse 8? What is the “but” contrasting?
- After receiving the “Challenge” (in verse 8), how do you think they felt when Jesus immediately left them?
- For a group of guys who never traveled more than a few miles from their homes, how do you think they understood this challenge that they would take the gospel to the ends of the earth?
- How does the Holy Spirit help us be a better witness for the kingdom?
- What is the “but” in your life? (Something where you are asking the wrong question in light of what God really wants to do through your life.)