“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.”
~ ACTS 1:8
“You Will Be My Witnesses”
The tall one in the corner—that’s Peter. Galilee thickened his accent. Fishing nets thickened his hands. Stubbornness thickened his skull. His biggest catch in life thus far has come with fins and gills. Odd. The guy pegged to lead the next great work of God knows more about bass and boat docks than he does about Roman culture or Egyptian leaders.
And his cronies: Andrew, James, Nathanael. Never traveled farther than a week’s walk from home. Haven’t studied the ways of Asia or the culture of Greece. Their passports aren’t worn; their ways aren’t sophisticated. Do they have any formal education?
In fact, what do they have? Humility? They jockeyed for cabinet positions. Sound theology? Peter told Jesus to forget the cross. Sensitivity? John wanted to torch the Gentiles. Loyalty? When Jesus needed prayers, they snoozed. When Jesus was arrested, they ran. Thanks to their cowardice, Christ had more enemies than friends at his execution.
Yet look at them six weeks later, crammed into the second floor of a Jerusalem house, abuzz as if they’d just won tickets to the World Cup Finals. High fives and wide eyes. Wondering what in the world Jesus had in mind with his final commission: “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth” (Acts 1:8 NIV).
You hillbillies will be my witnesses.
You uneducated and simple folk will be my witnesses.
You who once called me crazy, who shouted at me in the boat and doubted me in the Upper Room.
You will be my witnesses.
You will spearhead a movement that will explode out of Jerusalem like a just-opened fire hydrant and spill into the ends of the earth: into the streets of Paris, the districts of Rome, and the ports of Athens, Istanbul, Shanghai, and Buenos Aires.
I will praise You, O LORD, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.
~ PSALM 9:1