Power for witness
So when the apostles were with Jesus, they kept asking him, “Lord, has the time come for you to free Israel and restore our kingdom?” He replied, “The Father alone has the authority to set those dates and times, and they are not for you to know. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” Acts 1:6-8
Before He ascended to heaven, the Lord Jesus Christ told His disciples that they wait in Jerusalem and that they would receive power. The concern of the disciples was that the kingdom be restored. Yet, God’s mission for the disciples and for us is to be His witnesses. This was more important than anything else. Rather than get ourselves involved in idle speculation about the time and conditions of His return, we should give ourselves to the great unfinished task, telling others the gospel; the saving knowledge that Jesus alone provides. God promised with certainty that He will use us to lead someone to Him for His power will be at work in us. We are not alone doing this task for the Holy Spirit is in us. As we grow in our relationship with God, our faith is strengthened. Unmistakably, because of our faith in God, the more people around us see His work in our lives. God wants our faith in Him to grow exponentially. He is fully prepared to demonstrate His power to confirm our faith in both His character and His strength. “And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught” (Colossians 2:6–7). Part of the spiritual growth that God will use as a witness of His working in us is His sustaining grace when our human resources have failed us. It is during those times that He wants us to call on Him so we can have the strength that holds us up when we can barely stand. “You, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high” (Psalm 3:3). God wants us to be victorious until the end. We most need to know that being faithful to the end is God’s will for each of us, and as such, that He promises to bring us the power to finish our race. “I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns” (Philippians 1:6).