Monday, June 30, 2014

Amazing Grace


Amazing Grace:

"But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God." (Acts 20:24)

Today I'd like to draw your attention to the book of Acts, or rather the meaning behind the book of Acts. The book of Acts was written by Luke as a constituent to his Gospel of Luke. You can see his main outline for the book of Luke in Acts 1:1. I'll use the Message version for this particular verse, because it makes this concept a bit easier to grasp.

"Dear Theophilus, in the first volume of this book I wrote on everything that Jesus began to do and teach until the day he said good-bye to the apostles," (Acts 1:1MSG)

If Luke was an account of Jesus's ministry on earth, what then was Acts all about? Why did Luke feel compelled to write a sequel? Well, that is found right in Acts 1:8.

"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." (Acts 1:8)

This is what Jesus spoke to the apostles just moments before He was "taken up before their very eyes"(Acts1:9). I like to think that Acts is a recording of the world's first every missionaries. It's all about the growth of the Church and the spreading of the Gospel.

I love what Luke writes in Acts 20:24. It really portrays the whole heart and soul behind his work that's recorded in the book of Acts.

"But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God." (Acts 20:24)

There it is! Did you catch it? The ministry that Luke received straight from Jesus before He ascended into Heaven was what? To testify God's grace!

In the original Greek this phrase of "testifying to" means to devoutly and repeatedly bear witness. It also portrays affirming and declaring the truths of redemption; that is, Jesus's work on the Cross to redeem and restore all mankind.

So, in short, Acts is all about testifying to God's grace through Jesus's sacrificial death and resurrection. I see Acts as a book of evangelical strides. This book writes of the movement of delivering the Gospel of God's Grace to the ends of the earth. Paul and Barnabas actually spoke these very words right in Acts 13:47.

"For this is what the Lord has commanded us: ‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.'" (Acts 13:47)

We are the light of the world, delivering the Good News of Grace to all those who are in darkness. It's our mission and our joy to tell of God's AMAZING GRACE! The wonderful saving grace that has covered over us cannot be kept a secret, but must be earnestly and continually announced and proclaimed in freedom to those in captivity.

"The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners," (Isaiah 61:1)

Just like the apostles were instructed to be a light in this world full of dark, we too are called to be deliverers of this message of hope. If you're on fire for Christ and the joy that He has planted in you simply cannot be contained, shout for joy, sing praise, and run about in the most free and delightful manner.

Share in the celebrations, and tell the whole world! Live an "Acts life" and act on this miraculous Good News by spreading the freedom fire. Let the Spirit of the living God burst forth with joy inside your heart. Tell of His amazing grace today my friends! 

Jesus said these words, "to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me." (Acts 26:18)

Sharing is caring, but in the sense of Salvation, sharing is imperative (unfortunately that doesn't rhyme). So don't be shy about sharing God's grace, and that's coming from The INTROVERTED Evangelist! It's just too good to be timid! Be blessed today all.


-The Introverted Evangelist

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