January 21 - Acts 1
THEO WHO? Knowing the context and history of each book of the Bible is the first step towards properly interpreting it and applying it to your life. Here are a couple of excellent references to help you get to know the book of Acts. First, yesterday I put in a link for the Faithlife Study Bible, one of the best resources available for general Bible study that's absolutely FREE. Each day you will find that the picture and caption at the top of each post link to that Bible. Another great resource are these short (6-8 min.) intro videos from The Bible Project. The first thing we read in Acts is that this is the second book written to a man named Theophilus. If you type his name into the search bar at the Faithlife Study Bible (BibleGateway is also a great online study Bible) you'll notice that the gospel of Luke was addressed to him as well. That means Luke also wrote the book of Acts. Luke was a Gentile, not a Jew. Keep this perspective in mind as we read this book. Theophilus is an interesting name. It's a Greek name that literally means 'Lover of God.' The age old question is: Was Theophilus an actual person, or was it a pen name for all Christians who love God? Add that to the list of questions to ask when you get to heaven.
WHAT ARE YOU STANDING AROUND LOOKING AT? The angels in v10-11 seem genuinely stunned that the apostles are looking up into the sky after Jesus ascended into heaven. True, it's not everyday that one sees somebody they lived and worked with on a daily basis, who amazed with miracles and teaching, who was killed by the authorities but suddenly appeared three days later, and who is now floating up into the sky. I think I would stare at the sky too. Nonetheless, the angel is perplexed with the apostles. Jesus is coming back, the angel said, so that means you have work to do. Go build His church. Those orders still stand.
MEETING: If you've been a church member for any length of time, you've been to too many meetings. Isn't it remarkable, though, that the first thing the apostles do after Christ ascended is have a church meeting. That's how important maintaining good order and discipline in the church is.
YES, YOU HAVE TIME. Acts 1 is a short chapter. Consider reading Psalm 24, called the Psalm of Ascension. It's only 10 verses, but instead of the apostles' perspective - standing on the ground looking up - it gives a heavenly perspective of Christ's ascension.
MEDITATE ON THIS: The concept of 'meditation' has been hijacked by all sorts of weird groups, but essentially it means to concentrate on something. After reading Acts 1 and Psalm 24 , meditate today on what it means for you that Christ ascended into heaven.
Thank God that Jesus could ascend victoriously into heaven, and that even now, He is there as head of His church, the one through whom the Father rules all things.
Thank God for the order He has established in the Church, and for the elders that He has provided to lead & guide the church in various places.
Pray that God will use you to further His Church in this world.
Joshua 1:1-9God’s Word is your connection to salvation.If you want to be strong & courageous, obey God’s Word.
Monday - God's Word brings strength & courage to you just like it did to Joshua
Tuesday - God leads us through His Word like He physically lead Moses
Wednesday - If you want to obey God's Word, you need to first know it
Thursday - Train yourself to benefit from God's Word by Memorizing, Meditating, & Mouthing (speaking) scripture
Friday - Keeping God's Word brings you success: possibly here on earth, and for sure in eternity