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Book of Acts, Chapter 1, Verses 3-5
Verse 3. ”To whom (the apostles He had chosen) also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs (an infallible proof was a token given of a “sure thing.” Jesus showed “sure thing” evidence that He was truly alive.), being seen of them forty days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God: (Verse 3 gives an overview of what had happened during the previous forty days. Now the attention will turn to this specific day; the day of Jesus’ ascension; the departure to heaven of the only begotten son of God, God manifest in the flesh.)
Verse 4. "And, being assembled together with (them), commanded (a bit more strident sound to the instruction now. Imagine the commandments mentioned in verse to be something Jesus said as they ambled along the seashore. Now -- it would be sitting in a circle. Jesus making eye contact with each man; His voice more strident. Before you do anything else I've commanded, do this that I'm saying now.) them that they should not depart from Jerusalem, but wait (stay around, don't wander off) for the promise of the Father, (the eternal expression of God) which, (saith he), ye have heard of me. (It is the Father's promise, you heard it from God manifest in flesh - totally man, totally God.)
Verse 5. “For John truly baptized (baptizo – immersed, saturated, totally affected) with water; but ye shall be baptized (same word for baptism. Immersed, saturated, totally affected) with the Holy Ghost (so the Holy Ghost is not the baptizer, instead the Holy Ghost is that in which they were to be baptized -- like John baptized in water. You will be baptized similarly with the Holy Ghost) not many days hence.”
Luke does not share many of the things Jesus taught. As we go forward in Acts 1, three emphatic principles are established:
- Tarry at Jerusalem until you receive the Holy Ghost – the promise of the Father.
- Despite your clear interest in certain things, such as the restoration of the kingdom to Israel, this is not something you are to know.
- The Holy Ghost in you will be in you for you to be my witnesses.
The premise of the Holy Ghost was not new to these men. On the evening before the crucifixion Jesus had said the Father would send the Holy Ghost to take the place of the absent physical Jesus. (John 14-16; specifically, 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7)
As the group near the ascension of the Lord, He gave specific instruction as to where they were to go and what they were to wait for. What had been spoken of just over 40 days earlier would soon be a reality.
After that he through the Holy Ghost had given commandments. On the other side of resurrection, Jesus did not leave his disciples to figure out “what next.” Instead he gave direct commandments.
Verse 4 – Assembled
A marginal reading has it as their “eating together.” “Eating together” is the common denominator of fellowship and companionship. Jesus was not giving them a lecture, but was sitting at a meal with the apostles. How often the grand things of this kingdom are presented in such a simple setting.
Better than being assembled together with them. Christ’s authority and their relationship with Him brought them together.
Verse 3 – Speaking and Lodging
Two different things happen in this time. Jesus is “Speaking concerning the kingdom;” as we follow His pattern this is the part that may be easy. The second part is more difficult for us: “Being assembled together with them” (“eating with them,” as the Revised Version margin has it, or “lodging with them,” as Moffatt translates it). Yet both are important. Jesus greatest impact on His followers was that He was “with them.” These are two of the means of Jesus’ ministry: speaking and lodging. Speaking, in itself, is incomplete; the message must be made real in daily living and become part of the minds and lives of people. Jesus being assembled with them gave opportunity for these men to learn the practical realities of what He was asking.
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