Holy Ghost Power
(Your are Witnesses)
William Stout / General
Acting out Acts / Holy Spirit: Gifts; Evangelism; Second Coming / Acts 1:1–15
The Book of Acts
The Book of Acts:
- written by Luke
- Part two of Luke’s historical account
- One of the most important books for every Christian to read
- After the gospels, every Christian should read Acts
- The book of Acts isn’t clear without the Gospels as prerequisite
- The Gospels are not applied without Acts.
- The Gospels are not applied without Acts
- Acts is about ordinary men and women – like you and I
- nothing extraordinary about the people of Acts – except Jesus
- Acts is about how Christians Should act
Acts is How Christians should act
- The Gospels deal mostly with the acts and teachings of Jesus
- The epistles deal mostly with the teachings of Christian doctrine
- doctrine of salvation by grace
- the doctrine of faith
- of forgiveness and love
- The book of acts records the acts of the disciples after Jesus was ascended
- As we go through this series, everyone should be looking for present day application of these acts
- God hasn’t changed
- The gospel Hasn’t changed
- We should still act like Christians today
- The book of acts gives us an example of what that would look like
- Examples by action of faith, love, healing. miracles, prophecy, courage, faithfulness, giving, sacrifice, selflessness, preaching, salvation, evangelism, exhortation, rebuking, correction, perseverance, suffering for Jesus,
Acts 1:1–3 NKJV
1 The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach,
2 until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen,
3 to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.
- Acts was written to Theophilus, as part two to Luke’s first letter to him
- Begins with The Disciples after Jesus had given them commandments and then been taken up
- After He had presented Himself alive by Many infallible proofs
Many infallible proofs
- There was and still is, very much evidence to support the account of Jesus’ resurrection from the dead
- One of the best proven and best documented events of ancient History
- Secular history, Jewish history and Christian history all agree that Jesus was a true historical figure
- later religions also affirm this fact
- It is not possible to reasonably claim that He did not exist
- The only question then to debate is whether He was who He said, and whether He rose from the dead
- Luke claims there were “many infallible proofs of this fact
- Consider just a few
- over 25,000 handwritten copies of the new testament have been found
- over 5,600 in greek
- over 10,000 in Latin
- The next closest example has only 600 copies (Homer, Iliad). Most over 1,000 years after original
- Jesus foretold that He would rise from the dead
- was seen by the disciples, and others, and over 500 at once
- many were still alive when Paul and Luke wrote of them (so people could go and talk to them)
- His disciple rejected Him, yet repented, and then died for their faith
- They could have had no other motive, except it were true.
- Thousands believed, and were transformed
- These “infallible proofs” continued afterward through the apostles, through workingof miracles, answered prayers, and changed lives
- And they continue unto this very day, in me, and in you. I have a testimony!
Acts 1:4–5 NKJV
4 And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, “which,” He said, “you have heard from Me;
5 for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
Wait for the Promise
- Wait – sometimes we don’t want to wait
- David, in the 27th Psalm reminds us to wait on the Lord
Psalm 27:13–14 NKJV
13 I would have lost heart, unless I had believed That I would see the goodness of the Lord In the land of the living.
14 Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord!
- This “promise of the Father” that they were waiting for, is the Holy Spirit
- Jesus had promised He would come
- That He would lead us, and teach us
- So many people want the power of the Holy Spirit, but they don’t want to be led by Him
- We often claim we want to be Led byHim, when what we really mean is that we want Him to be led by us.
- Or, even worse, we confuse the leading of our own emotions with the leading of the Holy Spirit
- Jeremiah talked bout this in referring to prophets who prophesy out of their own heart
- To be Led by Him, means we have to let go of the control, we have to defer to His ways, and His thoughts
- His thoughts are not our thoughts
Isaiah 55:8–9 NKJV
8 “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
9 “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And My thoughts than your thoughts.
- We must let Jesus Christ have the preeminence –
- We should “wait” until we know who is leading—
- How often things would be different if people would only wait before they speak, before they act.
- You do not have to say it today!
- You do not have to take action today!
- Nearly all of the things that people do in haste could be delayed, or avoided altogether –
- Is it really an emergency?
- Why can’t you pray for a day or two before you take action, speak evil, retaliate, make rash decisions, especially that affect others?
- So often people are moved to hast becasue of anger
James 1:20 NKJV
20 for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
Be baptised in the Holy Ghost
- John baptised with water…
- representative of something to come, or that has happened
- Baptize = baptizo = to be immersed, fully wet
- Like a sponge
- You shall be baptised in the Holly Ghost
- You then, shall be fully immersed in the Holly Ghost
- He is in you, and you are in Him
- We are one in him
John 17:22–23 NKJV
22 And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one:
23 I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.
Acts 1:6–8 NKJV
6 Therefore, when they had come together, they asked Him, saying, “Lord, will You at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?”
7 And He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons which the Father has put in His own authority.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
- We do not know when He is coming back
- But He is coming
- sooner now than when you first believed
You shall receive Power
- The Holy Ghost comes with power
- This word for power used here is “dynamis” , not exousia
- Dynamis = power, might, strength, force, etc.
- The Holy Spirit in you, mans you have received power.
- God has imparted to you Spiritual gifts, power to use them
- This power comes through God, through faith
- Must be exercised through faith (exercise = growth)
- Just as natural abilities are excersided through physical means, spiritual abilites are excersised through spiritual means. This is faith
- We will see this demonstrated as we read through this book together
Mark 16:15–18 NKJV
15 And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature.
16 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
17 And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues;
18 they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”
John 14:12 NKJV
12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father.
- As we study this book, look for examples of these ordinary people doing these extraordinary things through this “power” of the Holy Spirit
You shall be witnesses
- What does a witness do?
- They testify about what they know
- you know Jesus
- This is the purpose of Holy Spirit Power
- All of the miracles are connected to this purpose
- Jesus pointed this out to the people who sought Him after feeding the 5,000
- These miracles that we do in His name, should always be to point people to the gospel
- Be looking for this also as we read through this book together
- Notice that the miracles you will see were not for their own purpose, but were used to bring the message
- So many people want the Works of Jesus apart form the gospel of Jesus
- The Power that we receive when the Holly Spirit is in us, is power to be witnesses – to make known the manifold wisdom of God
Ephesians 3:10 NKJV
10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,
- In Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the uttermost parts of the earth
- Here in your own neighborhood and City, throughout your region, even in places where you are uncomfortable, and throughout the world!
- Every place you go!
- Witnessing = evangelising
- remember from our message on evangelism, everywhere you go, every chance you get, every way you can. Be a witness for Jesus
Acts 1:9–11 NKJV
9 Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight.
10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel,
11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.”
This same Jesus who was taken from you, Will come in like manner
- He is coming back
- Just as there are many infallible proofs of His death and resurrection; there are many proofs of the prophecy being fulfilled in this present time – His return is very soon
- Why are you gazing up to heaven
- Don’t just stand around waiting
- Don’t think you are being a good Christian by gazing up to heaven and not doing bad stuff – statues can do that
- Jesus will return, make the time count – use this power that He gave you!
- Seek Him, Seek His power, Seek His mission
- Too many pseudo Christians just want to “gaze up to heaven” while serving themselves, never thinking about the Lord’s return, and whether He will really find faith on the earth when He comes
- What will you be doing when He comes?
John 4:35 NKJV
35 Do you not say, ‘There are still four months and then comes the harvest’? Behold, I say to you, lift up your eyes and look at the fields, for they are already white for harvest!
Acts 1:12–14 NKJV
12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day’s journey.
13 And when they had entered, they went up into the upper room where they were staying: Peter, James, John, and Andrew; Philip and Thomas; Bartholomew and Matthew; James the son of Alphaeus and Simon the Zealot; and Judas the son of James.
14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.
They continued in Prayer and Supplication
- So what should you do?
- They were told to “wait for the promise”
- and they were told “not to stand around gazing to heaven”
- So, what then?
- They continued in prayer and supplication
- Do you ask the Lord before you go? Or do you just go?
- Were you “sent” or did you just “went”
- Too many people do not earnestly seek Him, seek His mission, Seek His calling, through prayer and supplication
- This is what they were doing when the “rushing mighty wind” came.
- They didn’t specifically know what was coming. They were just seeking Him
- Don’t just stand around gazing – seek Him, and Be a witness.