Wednesday 22 June, 2016

Acts 4:23-31

23 Peter and John were allowed to leave. They went back to their own people. They reported everything the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 The believers heard this. Then they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Lord and King,” they said, “you made the heavens, the earth and the sea. You made everything in them. 25 Long ago you spoke by the Holy Spirit. You spoke through the mouth of our father David, who served you. You said, “ ‘Why are the nations angry? Why do the people make useless plans? 26 The kings of the earth rise up. The rulers of the earth gather together against the Lord and against his anointed king.’ (Psalm 2:1,2) 27 In fact, Herod and Pontius Pilate met with the Gentiles in this city. They also met with the people of Israel. All of them made plans against your holy servant Jesus. He is the one you anointed. 28 They did what your power and purpose had already decided should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider the bad things they say they are going to do. Help us to be very bold when we speak your word. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal. Do signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” 31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit. They were bold when they spoke God’s word.

I love Peter and John’s response after being released from the Sanhedrin. They immediately went back to their own people and told them what had happened, and the people began to pray fervently together, that the Holy Spirit would enable them to be bold, and that more signs and wonders would take place in Jesus’ name.

I am encouraged by this example because it is just what the church is meant to look like. When we are discouraged, challenged and questioned for our faith, how incredible it is to have people that we can go to who will call upon God on how behalf, who will support us in our faith. So often when our faith is challenged we can get discouraged and our immediate response is to withdraw, yet we can see clearly here that the support and prayer of other believers was so powerful. In this case, the Holy Spirit showed up big time, the building was shaken and all who were there were filled with the Holy Spirit, emboldened to speak the word of God.

May we be people who call upon other believers for support, and who willingly support and pray for other believers, that God’s name would be glorified. Amen!

Written by Madelaine Tarasenko

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