Thursday, August 07, 2008

Acts 4: 1-12

I think that when we do God’s work, we often expect people to be grateful for it. But it is interesting that here, when Peter and John teaching people about God, the result is that at least some folks (and some pretty powerful, pretty religious folks at that) were “much annoyed.”

And I think we should expect that as well. If we are doing what God calls us to do, and if others are not, then they have to be annoyed with us to justify their own choices and behavior. If we are boldly proclaiming Jesus, and others are failing to do so, then of course our proclamation will be upsetting to them. It is a way of excusing their own failure to do so.

Have you annoyed anybody lately with the faithfulness and boldness of your witness? Have I?
Of course, not everybody was annoyed. We are told that 5,000 who heard the word believed. That’s pretty impressive. Sounds like it was worth annoying a few people.

I think it is interesting that the Bible counts the number of people who believe. I firmly believe we all count what is important to us (number of years married, business profit, numbers of fish caught, number of games won by our favorite sports team, etc). The Bible counts the number of people who believe because those people are so very important to God.

How important are they to us? How many people can we count that have believed because of our witness?

We as the church get upset about many things we see “sinners” doing. I think it is often a way of excusing our failure to the primary thing God has called us to do: bring others to saving faith in his son, “ ‘for there is no other name under heaven given among mortals by which we must be saved.’”

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