So when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” Acts 1:6-8
Luke, begins the “history book of the Church”- with a recapitulation of what has happened recently. Jesus had risen from the dead, given instructions to His followers, and ascended into the clouds. The plan was mapped out in general terms- the early believers were to be His “witnesses” in their own sphere of influence and then to nearby people and ultimately everyone in the world. Webster’s Dictionary defines witness as:
1. attestation of a fact or event: testimony. 2. one that gives evidence specifically: one who testifies in a cause or before a judicial tribunal 3. one asked to be present at a transaction so as to be able to testify to its having taken place 4. one who has personal knowledge of something 5a. something serving as evidence or proof: a sign; 5b. public affirmation by word or example of usually religious faith or conviction.
The promise is that those first Christians would receive some supernatural power beyond their own that would assist them in fulfilling their role as witnesses. It happened when they received the Holy Spirit of God in their lives. And oh, did they live with power. That same power is available to us today if we will invite Christ Jesus to be the Lord of our lives and commit to be His witnesses. I am in. Who’s with me?
What kind of witness am I and to whom? What personal knowledge can I share of Jesus life, death, resurrection, and the Holy Spirit living in me?
God, as this day begins, I am committing to fulfilling my role as Your witness to the things I have come to know of Jesus. I see how people need a deep and abiding faith. Use me to encourage and inspire and to impart the greatest gift available to man- a personal relationship with our maker.