Merritt Seventh-day Adventist Church

The Big Promise XXX

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GOD'S SECRETS REVEALED

Part XXX
The Big Promise
 
It had now been forty days since Jesus' resurrection. The disciples, no doubt, felt a bit uncertain of their future when He called them together on the mount of olives and then instructed them to wait for the promise of the Father.
Then, they asked Him the same question they had asked before, “Will you at this time again restore the kingdom of Israel?”
These disciples along with the other Jews really hoped that Jesus would declare Himself King, chase out the Romans and restore Israel again to the greatness of David's reign. Of course, the disciples would be important people in the new government.
Jesus said this would be up to the Father but they would receive power to witness for Jesus in all parts of their immediate area and to all the world. They were to tell of Jesus' life, love and care for people, how He healed them, forgave their sins and encouraged them into a new and happier way of life. They were also to tell the story about the leaders. That because Jesus had not followed their way of thinking, they had Him crucified and, how Jesus forgave those who had caused Him pain and suffering. They were to tell that because of Jesus' love for all humanity He allowed them to crucify Him and of how He died, was buried in a secure tomb then on the third day Jesus rose again.
While Jesus spoke to them, He suddenly began to rise and as they watched in amazement, He steadily rose until He went out of sight. For the disciples, all hope for the future must have died in them while they gazed upward to catch one more glimpse of their disappearing friend.
Two beings in white, angels, suddenly stood beside them and said, “Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into Heaven? This same Jesus who is taken up from you into Heaven shall so come in like manner as ye have seen Him go into Heaven.” He went up in visible body form and He would return that way. They would recognize Him as their Lord and Friend.
Before His crucifixion Jesus told His disciples that He would go to Heaven to prepare a dwelling place for them there. Then Jesus would return to take them to Heaven with Him to be there for all time.
Instead of being sad that their beloved Jesus was gone, they went back to Jerusalem joyfully for now they had assurance that He had not gone for good but was coming back again. That is good news for them and us.
The whole group of believers at that time consisted of about 110 men and women plus eleven disciples (Judas was dead).
Jesus had told them that they were to go and give the wonderful news of His life, death, resurrection, ascension and promise to the world.
What a huge assignment! There were no phones, radios or telephones. There was no other way of transportation except walk. How could they possibly accomplish this task given them?
Jesus said all power is given to Me in Heaven and in Earth. The one who had hung the world in its space, put into place the sun, moon and stars, the One who created all things on earth including man said to them, “I am with you always even unto the end of the age.”
The disciples spent about forty days in preparation for whatever Jesus would do for them. The days of Pentecost came and many Jews from all countries all around Judea attended these feasts. There were people from 16 places and language groups. The disciples were together when suddenly a rushing as of a mighty wind and tongues of fire appeared on the heads of the disciples. The disciples went and began to talk to the people about Jesus. They suddenly realized that everyone understood what was being said in their own language. This was the power that Jesus had promised. The people understood and the disciples talked in whatever language he spoke.
Peter stood up and preached a mighty sermon about who Jesus was and everyone understood. Three thousand people believed and accepted Jesus right there. They were baptized and added to the church.
Acts 2:47 says, “...And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved.”
The church was and still is God's way of bringing truth, dedication and salvation to all who choose obedience and eternal life.
 
Next week: Expansion
 
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