The Book of ACTS
Please make sure that you read part one before you continue.
When they [the 12 apostles] therefore were come together, they asked of him, saying, Lord will thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel?† -- Acts 1: 6
This was actually a foolish question and is typical of what any man might do in this situation.† Christ is teaching everyone about the new birth and how to prepare for the day of Pentecost and the 12 apostles were asking him about the restoration of the kingdom to Israel.† Watch what Jesus Christ said to them.
And he [Jesus Christ] said unto them, It is not for you know the times of the seasons which the father had put in his own power. -- Acts 1: 7
Jesus Christ told them in the nicest way possible that they should mind their own business.† It was not for them to know the time when God was going to take a certain action.† God does everything at the exact right moment in time and quite often He does not tell anyone when He is going to take a certain action.† Now watch what Jesus Christ does next.† He shifts the subject back to receiving the power of the holy ghost and the implications of receiving this great power.
But ye shall receive [lambano] power, after that the holy ghost is come upon you:† and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth. -- Acts 1: 8
Notice how I have highlighted the Greek word for receive.† The word lambano in Greek means to receive into manifestation.† When a born again believer speaks in tongues, he or she lambanos that Word of God.† That believer puts into manifestation the spirit of God in Christ in him or her.† Speaking in tongues is the only proof in the senses world that we are born again of Godís spirit.
The rest of the verse goes on to tell us that we will be witnesses in all different cities and also unto the uttermost part of the earth.† Now let me ask you a question.† What city do you live in?† What state or country do you live in?† The Word says that we will be witnesses unto the uttermost part of the earth.† Does that cover the geographical area where you live?† I grew into this position by witnessing to many people face-to-face.† I did as much for God as I possibly could and that is why I am in the position I am in.† Satan canít touch me, even though he tries.† I make a fool out of him no matter what he tries to do to me.† I am doing this right now.† It is a commandment of God that we witness or share His Word with others.† The best way I can do this at this time in my life is through this computer.† You need to find a way in your life that is best for you pertaining to witnessing.† But you must witness Godís Word or you will never grow and become strong spiritually.† Many people are afraid to witness, but if you just give it a try, you will find out how exciting it really can be.† Remember, everyone is searching for the love of God.† If you have that love of God in your heart, you will be a blessing to almost everyone that you meet.† Donít waste time with people who are not interested.† The enemy will try to do this to you many times.† You sometimes might witness to a person twice and if they donít turn on, you get away from them and you donít go back.† Believe me, witnessing is an art and it has to be developed.† In verse eight of Acts, Christ is exhorting us to share Godís Word with other people.† How would you have got to know about the more than abundant life that I am teaching you if I did not witness the Word of God to you?† If this site were not here, there would be thousands of people left alone and wandering in darkness.† The people who are in darkness in this world need to see the light of Jesus Christ.† You are that light so do not be afraid to tell people what you believe and to be gentle and kind with people.††
The next verse talks about the Ascension of Jesus Christ back up to God where he sits on Godís right hand.† He has now spent 40 days on the earth after he was raised from the dead.† It was his time to leave.† He would return in 10 more days on the day of Pentecost.
And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. -- Acts 1: 9
And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel: -- Acts 1: 10
What about these two men?!† They were actually angels of the true God.† No, they did not have wings and they were not singing.† Thatís all tradition and religion (i.e. a bunch of bull).† Donít think that angels canít come down from God.† Sitting down???† -- IT HAPPENED TO ME.† It was one angel that appeared to me as a regular person.† This can happen to a believer without him or her even knowing it.† They have a message for people, as you will clearly see in verse 11.† After the message is given, they seem to just disappear.
Itís a beautiful thing to have a spiritual outlook on life.† You live on a positive plain as compared to a carnal mind.† You live with hope and joy every day.
For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is† life and peace.† Because the carnal mind is enmity [at conflict] against God:† for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.† So then they that are in the flesh cannot please God. -- Romans 8: 6 - 8
Thatís what the Word says and thatís what the Word means.† I ran across someone today who knew it all.† You cannot converse with these people.† They live by the five senses and are at conflict with God.† When you run across people who are not teachable, politely excuse yourself and graciously avoid them in the future.† Thatís what I do.† It works.† Donít get sin conscious.† You need to have yourself together before you can help anybody else.† This person today was trying to tell me how much water I should drink in a day.† My health is near perfect and he has a serious problem.† Give me a break.† This type of person, you cannot reach.† Let us get back to Acts and I would exhort you to read the two previous verses 9 and 10 to refresh your memory as to the context of this section.
Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven?† this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven. -- Acts 1: 11
As I previously taught you, the angels were there to give a message to the apostles.† Once that was completed, there is no further mention of the angels.† Also, the angels were able to give much comfort to the apostles by telling them that Jesus Christ would be coming back.
However, that may not be the most important part of verse 11.† Now there is a lot of controversy concerning what I am about to share with you.† Notice that the angels said ďYe men of GalileeĒ.† There was only one apostle that was from Judea and that was Judas who betrayed Jesus Christ.† By the time these angels gave this message, Judas had left.† He could not take the anguish and guilt that he felt knowing what he did by betraying innocent blood.† It was at this time that Judas went and hanged himself.† He committed suicide.† You will be able to see this even more clearly in verse 13 where if you count the names of the apostles, there were only 11.† In the later parts of this chapter, you will see that Judas was replaced.† 11+1 = 12
Then returned they unto Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is from Jerusalem a Sabbath dayís journey. -- Acts 1: 12
And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James, and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son† of† Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother† of James. -- Acts 1: 13
And another very controversial principle involves the fact where the apostles abode.† The Word of God clearly states that they went into an ďupper roomĒ.† In biblical times, no women were allowed in the sleeping quarters of men.† And you can see in this verse, that this was absolutely true.† But again, that is not the main point that I want to get across.† If you have studied Acts chapter 2, verses 1 through 4, verse 1 talks about the place where the apostles were.† They were with one accord in one place.† The secular world and religion wrongly divide this verse by saying that the apostles were still in the upper room on the day of Pentecost.† We will have to go back to the Gospels to where Jesus Christ instructed them where they were to be.† However, for now, I am going to state clearly that they were in the Temple.† I had a discussion with a minister one time who insisted that the day of Pentecost occurred in the upper room.† This person was a good person in his heart and he was trying as hard as he could, but he did not rightly divide the Word of God.† He kept insisting that it was in the upper room.† And I told him as clearly as I could, that this situation occurred in the Temple.† If you read farther into Acts chapter 2, you will see that there were great numbers of people present that witnessed what happened on the day of Pentecost.† This amount of people could not possibly fit into the upper room where the 11 apostles abode.† Now some people who try to act like Christians will say:† ďWhat difference does it make?Ē† It makes all the difference in the world between the rightly divided Word of God and pure guesswork, which comes from the god of this world.† If the rightly divided Word of God is the only thing that can defeat the devil and all his devil spirits, do you think he wants you to know the Word of God rightly divided?† Or do you think he would rather confuse the issue and teach you the Word of God wrongly divided Ė where it has no power whatsoever.† I am sure that you know the answer to that question.
These [the 11 apostles] all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. -- Acts 1: 14
The apostle to replace Judas was not yet chosen, so it should be pointed out and understood that this verse is referring to the 11 apostles, who were all Galileans.† I am going through these verses as simply and minutely as possible so that you can understand the book of Acts.† This book is severely misunderstood by many secular sources and organized religions.† What you read in these teachings is rightly divided Ė there is no guesswork here.† These teachings in Acts are geared towards the more advanced biblical student.† However, a new person can take the time to understand what is written.† The apostles and the women continue to pray to God for guidance and understanding pertaining to what was to come, which was the great day of Pentecost.† I should mention at this point that the day of Pentecost was only a one- time occurrence.† It was the time when people can become born again of Godís spirit.† People could now become not only body and soul, but body, soul and spirit.† From the day of Pentecost until this present time, it is still available for people to take advantage of this.† It results in you getting the spirit of God in Christ in you.† In Corinthians, it states that if the devil ever knew that the day of Pentecost was coming, he would never have crucified the Lord of glory.† Why?† Because now, instead of having only one Jesus Christ, everyone who is born again has that same power and even greater power.† What is the greater power?† We have the ability to teach people about the new birth.† We can help people learn how to be born again (Romans 10: 9, 10).† Jesus Christ did not have that ability, believe it or not, because it was not yet available until the day of Pentecost.†
And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,) -- Acts 1: 15
Notice how God places an explanation in this verse.† In biblical terminology, a parenthesis is a figure of speech referred to as an explanation.† It sits in this verse like a diamond because it verifies and backs up the point that we discussed before.† These apostles were no longer in the upper room.† They were in a place where Peter could stand up in the midst of them and the Word clearly states that there were about a 120 believers that were present.† How in the world can you fit all of these people in an upper room?† You must see by now that the Word of God must be studied.† The context must be studied along with what is in the verse itself and also where it is used before.† These are the three ways that the Word of God interprets itself.† So now, we have clear proof that the apostles were changing locations during this time in Acts.† So where is it easier to understand where the apostles were on the day of Pentecost?† Is it easy to say that they were in the upper room (kind of crowded, wouldnít you say) or were they in the temple where Jesus Christ told them to be?† I mentioned to you previously that it was stated in the Gospels regarding the Temple.† You can have a good study session with yourself and God by finding out where in the Gospels Jesus Christ told the apostles about the temple.† And let me mention one more time that Jesus Christ told the apostles that water baptism was no longer necessary.† They were to be baptized with the Holy Spirit.† Now you either want to believe man and his tradition or you want to believe the Word of God.† I made my choice Ė I donít care to be an idiot.† Thatís the best way I can put it.
Men and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. -- Acts 1: 16
For he [Judas] was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry. -- Acts 1: 17
Many of us do not know that Judas was the treasurer for the Apostles.† He was also dishonest and stole from the treasury.† That is what ďthe reward of iniquityĒ is referring to in the next verse.† Judas used stolen money to buy a field where he committed suicide.
Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out. -- Acts 1: 18
Judas wedged his sword on the ground and then fell on the blade at his abdomen.† Thatís the way it happened.
And it was known to all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as that field is called in their proper tongue, A-cel-dama, that is to say, The field of blood. -- Acts 1: 19
There are 7 more Scriptures in this Chapter that we will incorporate into Part 3 of this chapter.† Iíd like to make a statement as to how important the book of Acts is to us then and today.† We need to rise up to this example and hold it forth like the early believers did.† We, today, are Godís arms and legs and mouth.† God doesnít move until we believe and take action.
Even so faith [pistis - believing] if it hath not works [action], is dead, being alone. -- James 2: 17
By reading Acts and the Pauline Epistles; one quickly notes the numerical growth and spiritual prosperity of the first century Church.† The twentieth century Church obviously doesn't compare in its vitality.† Thus we have everything to gain by following the early Church's example. God hasn't changed.† And since we still have His power, we can surely adapt the techniques of the early Church and couple it with the power of God within each of us as Christians.† We are the ones who must apply these principles and this power and the apostles' boldness to make the twentieth century Church stronger and more vital than the Christian Church has ever been.† This is our opportunity and challenge.† Herein we must stand fast.
This concludes Part Two of Acts Chapter One