Acts 1

This is part of a Daily Devotional Orwell Bible Church prepares each week. You can get a copy from our Downloads and Literature page.

The book of Acts was written by Luke and he begins Acts by referring to his gospel (vv. 1–2); he then summarizes Jesus’ ministry to the disciples (v. 4). The disciples would be “baptized with the Holy Spirit” (v. 5), by which every believer in Jesus would be put into the body of Christ (cf. 1 Cor 12:13), forming the church (this is relayed in 2:1–4). Having been taught by Jesus the last 40 days about the kingdom of God (v. 3), the disciples asked “when” it would be established (v. 6). Jesus did not change their understanding of the kingdom (the “what”) but told them what they must do until he returned (v. 11) and established the kingdom (cf. Daniel 7:13–14; Luke 21:27, 31).

After Jesus ascended into heaven two angels informed them that Jesus would return again just like he departed from them (v. 11). Note that after they returned to Jerusalem and gathered together for prayer that Jesus’ brothers were with them (v. 14). During Jesus’ ministry before his death his brothers did not believe in him (John 7:5); evidently sometime after his resurrection they did.

In verses 15–26 Peter led the other disciples to recognize whom Jesus had chosen (v. 24) as Judas Iscariot’s replacement. Such a one had to meet two criteria (vv. 21–22) and would have a special position and role (v. 25).

Truths to Nail Down and Meditate On

  1. The kingdom is the future rule of Jesus on David’s throne from Jerusalem in Israel (v. 6). It is not present now but will come when the Lord Jesus returns (vv. 6–8).
  2. Christians are not commanded to “build the kingdom” or “do kingdom work.” The Christian/church’s work until then is to tell the lost about Jesus, that he is the Christ, was crucified for sinners, rose from the dead, and is coming again. Tell the lost about Jesus! Be his witnesses!
  3. Christians pray together (v. 14). Regardless of any external differences—social, financial, cultural, gender—Christians who pray together united in mind and purpose have sweet fellowship and do the Lord’s work. Gather regularly with the church to pray!
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