May 17th The disciples pray
23: And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them. 24: And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: 25: Who by the mouth of thy servant David hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? 26: The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ. 27: For of a truth against thy holy child Jesus, whom thou hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, 28: For to do whatsoever thy hand and thy counsel determined before to be done. 29: And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word, 30: By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus. 31: And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness.
The disciples share their goods
32: And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common. 33: And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all. 34: Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold, 35: And laid them down at the apostles' feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need. 36: And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, 37: Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles' feet.
The Apostles return to the Church victoriously. They reported all that had happened and the whole Church prayed together. (presumably one person spoke but they were all united in the prayer. They addressed God as the creator of heaven and earth and sea and all the creatures in them. They quoted the Psalm of David when he spoke of the raging of the kings of the earth who stood up against the Lord and his Christ. This Psalm was fulfilled in the rejection of Christ and was still being fulfilled in the rejection of Christ in the Apostolic ministry. It will be fulfilled again in the Tribulation and the early part of the Kingdom. They acknowledged the rejection of The Lords ‘holy child Jesus’ by Herod, Pilate and the Gentiles and by the people of Israel. They were all gathered together against Christ. Yet they only did what the hand of God and the councel of God determined beforehand to do. The rejkection of Christ was no mistake it was all in the councels of God. Then they tell the Lord to see all their threatening and they pray not that the threatneings would be taken away but that the Apostles might have greater boldness to preach the message of God. And that the Lord would heal to authenticate their message and thsat signs and wonders might be demonstrated to Israel in the name of thy ‘holy child Jesus’. When they had prayed the earth shock the building where they were gathered. Even the earth itself responded to their prayer. Then they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and they went out and preached the message of the Kingdom with great boldness. WOW. We see that the filling of the spirit was to enable the believers to minister in boldness. The believers were totally united. They were one in heart and soul. None of them said this is mine, they all shared everything as if everything they had belonged to everyone. The preaching of the apostles to the resurrection was very powerful indeed and great Grace was on them all. Nobody was hungary - everbody shared everything. Those that had lands or houses sold them and brought the money to the apostles and a distribution of the funds was made according to the needs of the believers. There was one notable man Joses Barnabas (The son of consolation) He was a levite from Cyprus. He sold land and brought the money. This was a man would could bring comfort and encouragement.
- How would you describe the tension at this time?
- Describe what their prayer is like.
- How would you describe the spirit among the believers?