Day 50 Joy Is The Secret Sauce
Day 49 The Significance of Pentecost
Day 48 Visions and Dreams
The day of Pentecost. All heaven is breaking loose. People are astounded and wondering – “what the heck is going on?”
Peter explains the events of that first Pentecost moment, connecting the prophetic dots he quotes Joel 2:28
“In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. Acts 2:17 (NIV)
I’m age 53 as I write this, an “old man” by biblical standards. (I’m in denial, most days I feel much younger!)
This whole idea of prophecy, visions and dreams is about seeing a better future.
Day 47 Pour Out Your Spirit Lord
As I write this, Pentecost Sunday is just a few days away. This is the day the church was birthed, with a dramatic and spectacular manifestation of the Holy Spirit, unlike anything ever known before on earth.
The audio track must have been deafening, a sound from heaven, like a tornado – a mighty roaring violent wind. The tongues of fire, the ecstatic cacophony of every language declaring the wonders of God – all this drew a quite a crowd, and the audience was blown away, utterly “thunderstruck” (MSG).
“Amazed and perplexed they asked one another, ‘What does this mean?” Acts 2:12
That’s the million dollar question.
Day 46 Signs, Wonders and Miracles
15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. 17 And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; 18 they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.” Mark 16:15-18 (NIV)
The signs that Jesus says will accompany those who believe is pretty radical stuff.
- Driving out demons
- Speaking in new tongues
- Picking up snakes (Say what? But that’s what it says!)
- Drink poison with no ill effects
- Heal the sick by the laying on of hands
Although this may seem fantastic and unbelievable, all these signs are recorded as being fulfilled in the historical record. And I have personally witnessed some of these signs myself.
We worship a supernatural God, afterall, not a religious cultural institution.
Day 45 Lo, I am with you always…
18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. Matthew 28:18-20
These are the very last words of Jesus recorded by Matthew. This scripture has been a great comfort to me, as I’m sure it was to his disciples. He transferred leadership of his mission to his successors, as unlikely as they were.
The presence of Christ, his Spirit – the Holy Spirit, would be with them, to give them hope and courage. And Jesus promises to do that for us today.
We are not in this life, this mission, this fight, this journey, this story – alone. To all who believe, Jesus is right there beside us, “guarding, guiding all the way.”
Day 44 How God Chooses Leaders
23 So they nominated two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. 24 Then they all prayed, “O Lord, you know every heart. Show us which of these men you have chosen 25 as an apostle to replace Judas in this ministry, for he has deserted us and gone where he belongs.” 26 Then they cast lots, and Matthias was selected to become an apostle with the other eleven.Acts 1:23-26 (NLT)
The truth is, I don’t exactly know how God chooses leaders. Do you?
Day 43 Living Water!
For John baptized with water, but not many days from now you shall be baptized with (placed in, introduced into) the Holy Spirit. Acts 1:5 (AMP)
We’re in the final week and last lap of our devotional series!
Jesus was at the finish line of his run on earth. Moments before his ascension he promised the Holy Spirit was coming soon.
Earlier in his ministry he was very bold to confront the religious system, declaring life at the temple by propheysing in a loud voice:
Day 42 From Tribe to Family
“All of these with their minds in full agreement devoted themselves steadfastly to prayer, [waiting together] with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.” Acts 1:14 (AMP)
During the ten day period between the ascension of Jesus and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, his followers became more than a tribe, they became a family. The core group were his 11 disciples, plus “the women” and were joined by his natural family, Mary and his brothers.
A tribe is a collective of the like-minded. Now they decided they were all-in. They grew deeper. They progressed from agreement to commitment. “They agreed they were in this for good” (Acts 1:14 MSG)
Day 41 Timing Is God’s Business
6 When they were together for the last time they asked, “Master, are you going to restore the kingdom to Israel now? Is this the time?”
7-8 He told them, “You don’t get to know the time. Timing is the Father’s business. What you’ll get is the Holy Spirit. And when the Holy Spirit comes on you, you will be able to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, all over Judea and Samaria, even to the ends of the world.” Acts 1:6-8 (MSG)
Imagine this scene as Jesus is giving his very last words. In the preceding 40 something days his followers had lived through the most unbelievable, miraculous moments in history.
Now they asked a legit question. “Lord, what’s the plan? Are the rest of the prophecies going to be fulfilled now?”
Day 40 He’s coming back!
9-11 These were his last words. As they watched, he was taken up and disappeared in a cloud. They stood there, staring into the empty sky. Suddenly two men appeared—in white robes! They said, “You Galileans!—why do you just stand here looking up at an empty sky? This very Jesus who was taken up from among you to heaven will come as certainly—and mysteriously—as he left.” Acts 1:9-11 (MSG)
I don’t anticipate this truth as frequently or deeply as I should. Jesus is coming back, for sure – and not to my expectations. The Kingdom of God will see the return of the King.