ACTS 1:6-8 – So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”
THEME OF THE DAY. REMEMBER WHY WE ARE HERE. One of the many encouraging things about the Bible is the people of God we encounter are real. And that is good. The scriptures never paint believers as “super hero Christians” with unwavering faith and living on the Mount of Transfiguration with constant rapturous joy. They struggled. They fell into sin. They doubted. They sometimes revealed the ugliness of being self-centered. They were slow to learn. They failed. They focused on the wrong things. They were just like us. This is clearly put forth in today’s scripture. Here’s the setting. Jesus is getting ready to ascend to heaven. His departure is within minutes and what did the disciples do? They focused on the wrong thing. They wanted to know about the restoration of the kingdom to Israel, and Jesus wouldn’t have it. He points them back to the main thing.
This isn’t the first time His disciples asked questions of a secondary nature in importance. Seems like they were always asking Jesus questions, and sometimes those questions were off the main thing and on minor, even irrelevant, things. And we are like that too. Think about those times of being in conversations with Christians about spiritual things, even Biblical things, and Jesus is noticeably absent. Perhaps we entered dialogues about the ins and outs of ministry, church structure and function, spiritual gifts, or lamenting the unhealthy state of contemporary Christianity and all the while, the majesty, beauty, and greatness of the Lord Jesus never enters the conversations.
The disciples were being distracted from the centrality of Jesus Christ and what He was commissioning them to do. And this can happen to us with ease. When the main thing is no longer the main thing in our lives, our Christianity becomes one of external activity of what we do instead of living what we are to be. And Jesus directs us to what we are to be, “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth”.
Friends, Christians are not on this earth to be born, get an education, learn a trade, perhaps have a family, work toward retirement, and then die. Those are life experiences that we go through, but those are not the reasons why we are alive. Our single purpose in life is to be a witness to the reality and power of Jesus Christ. We are still on this earth to show people around us who are also still in this earth the truth of Him who made this earth. The way we do that is to live faithful Christ-centered lives every day before our families, friends, neighbors, co-workers, and fellow Christians in our churches. Remember, the greatest and most effective witness for Jesus Christ is not the service-driven Christian. It is the Christ-like Christian in character, attitude, and speech. When Jesus tells us the reason for our existence is to be His witnesses, He is telling us our lives are to be lived pointing people to Him. And that is what makes life have true meaning, satisfying purpose, and puts a “bounce in our spiritual step” every day of our lives. Why? It is the reason why we are still here.
PRAYER: “Father, help me to see my very existence is to proclaim the Person of Your Son.”
QUOTE: “Christians are witnesses for Jesus Christ. The question is are we good ones or not?”