...they had been with Jesus.
A couple of Sundays ago, I kicked-off our new sermon series, "Follow Me," with a message from Mark 3. The statement that really jumped out to me in that passage was,
(Mark 3:14) "He appointed twelve that they might be with Him and that He might send them out to preach."
Before they were called to do stuff for Him, Jesus wanted them to be with Him. In Acts 4, we see the character and conduct of men who have been with Jesus. Since we just finished Mark's Gospel, we can't help but marvel at the radical transformation of these men. We recognize it and so did the religious leaders who opposed them.
(Acts 4:13) Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.
This is what we should expect from those who had been "with Jesus" and then had sent out to preach. This is what you can expect from followers who really follow. This is what it looks like to be filled with the Holy Spirit.
- They spoke the truth with great boldness in the midst of opposition (Acts 4:13, 19, 20, 31).
- They exalted Jesus and gladly identified with Him (Acts 4:9-12).
- They prayed for more opportunities to share the Gospel, not for safety (Acts 4:29-30).
- They found their comfort and motivation in the Sovereignty of God (Acts 4:23, 28).
- They gave freely to the work of Christ (Acts 4:32-37).
What about us? Would anyone recognize in our character or conduct that we have "been with Jesus"? Are we followers who follow?
Father, I want to be with Jesus and I want to be for Jesus. Help me to be a follower who really follows. I want to know Jesus, love Jesus, live for Jesus and tell others about Him. Holy Spirit, fill me with You and empty me of myself.
BOBBY PRUITT | Lead Pastor