May 24, 2022


“In my former book, Theophilus, I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach until the day He was taken up to Heaven. This He did after giving instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles [formerly disciples] He had chosen.” (Acts 1. 1-2)

“Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer.” (Romans 12.11-12)


How we want to live in a world that is gray, filled with ambiguous reality, smoke and mirrors. As Abraham Lincoln was quoted: “You can fool some the people all the time; all the people some of the time; you cannot fool all the people all the time.” And we know, mighty ones of God, we do not fool ourselves nor God at any time. We may lie to ourselves thinking we can or that it doesn’t matter to delude ourselves because it is “me.” We may feign disbelief in God with the hope of escaping any and all accountability to a “higher” authority. Regardless, the true wills out and is exposed. Which would we prefer: God’s will or our own? We do not live in a gray world ethically, philosophically or spiritually. We know the words of Jesus to John the Presbyter in His Revelation warning: “Be hot or cold but not lukewarm lest I spew you from My mouth.” That may be a hard image to wrap ourselves around, Jesus spewing our life from His mouth, but choosing any will but God’s will leaves us in a world that chews us up and spits us out. We are not meant to be waffles. We are intended to be solid food, solid rock and firm in our convictions.

This does not deny the call to compassion, kindness, goodness, charity and a love that reaches out to all people. We must do these things as a matter of righteousness. But, we dare not compromise out purpose and our intention and believe a mushy life is a cushy life. We must be firm in our resolve equal to the firm foundation on which we stand. Having the fullest attention of the disciples following His resurrection, Jesus was able to establish the terms by which they would complete the days of the lives. People were not turning away from the gospel. They were drawn like moths to a candle. The longing in their own lives was not finding a connection to, what David described, “as deep calls unto deep.” The spirit of humanity craving infinite connection was no longer satisified with finite connections. This was no “talk of God” they had experienced all their lives. This was the “walk of God” they had desired all their lives. Their present hardships paled in comparison to what was yet to come. Still they had a heart, soul and mind for the Spirit of God which said “Come.” They did not change the word and will of God for the salvation of the world in order to appeal to the masses. The masses desired truth. They wanted a truth that would set them free from the confines of worldly living and give them a real hope for living on earth as it would be in heaven.

For Luke, the evidence was clear. Live out the life of Jesus and “they will come.” Build up the Church with Christ as the cornerstone and “they will come.” They will come not because it feels familiar to their own way, affirms them in the way they were going, sounds like what they are comfortable with. They will come because “deep calls unto deep.” As the apostles held fast to their training as disciples they experienced the prosperity of faith, hope and love. Dozens, hundreds and thousands were added to “their number” on a daily basis. Base camp of new believers may have felt to the Temple leadership something akin to Jacob’s descendants did to Pharaoh. They were a growing number multiplying without bound. Some control had to be exerted but none was sufficient. Jesus was crucified now He arose. Followers are persecuted and the fervor for God increased. Eventually, the captives were freed to gain the promised land. That promised land was the earth and the fulness thereof. The commissioning of Christ was their Moses. Beginning in Jerusalem, then Judea and eventually the four corners and furthest reaches of the earth was being filled with the broadcasting of good news.

And what was the “secret”? It was no secret. There was no hidden truth. John captured it in Jesus’ words in the upper room “I am the way, the truth and the live. Those who believe in Me shall live and have eternal life.” The apostles took the good news to the people and the people responded. Their model of consistency for loving one another within the fellowship of Christ’s body appealed to those who were far off. People surrendered their lives to be like the disciples. It wasn’t the other way around. It will never work. It lacks the fulfillment of Jesus’ teaching “seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and that which is needed shall be provided.” But, keeping the community of faith whole and fluid in its “love for one another” was the invitation that appealed to those who truly desired eternal life. They wanted “that.” If it worked then and has lasted two thousand years in spite of the efforts to the contrary, then it will work now. This is the hope that we have and Pentecost is that reminder. We dare not forget it or change it to be something that it was not. This was the message of Peter to those in the Temple courtyard that fateful morning. No further sacrifice was needed to effect the “first fruit” harvest of souls for the glory of God and the welfare of humanity. It was not a gray area for Peter and the others. It was plain, clear and obviously the truth in “black and white.”

TODAY’S PRAYER: Father God, You have favored us with good news to broadcast in word and deed into all the world. You have made it possible for us to accomplish that which You have given. We believe that You will not put more on us that we are able to do. Nothing shall be impossible for us as we commit ourselves to priority number one- preach good news and promote the acceptance of salvation in Christ alone! We believe; help us in our unbelief. Pour out Your blessing on those whom we will broadcast good news of a great joy. Put Your protection over their lives and keep them safe from eternal harm. Let us be strong in the face of evil and evil doers and let us not enter into the consideration of temptation which tells us we can be lukewarm. We ask this in the name of Jesus our Lord who was and is and will always be our Savior and our Friend. AMEN.

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