Acts 1:8 is a key verse.
8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Ju-dea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.
This bible verse reveals that the power of the church comes from the Holy Spirit and not from man (see Zech. 4.6). Man is endowed with a lot of skill, talent and capacity. But nothing of or in man can accomplish or replace the work of the Holy Spirit in God’s work.
Ordinary people were able to do extraordinary things because the Spirit of God was at work in their lives. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is not a luxury; it is an absolute necessity.
God’s people in the bible, experienced repeated fillings of the Spirit as they needed His presence in their lives to face new opportunities and obstacles (Acts 2.4; 4.8, 31; 9.17; 13.9).
The word ‘Witness’ (Acts 1:vs 8)is used many times in the book of Acts. A witness is somebody who can give a firsthand account of something seen, heard, or experienced; for example, a witness to an accident. A witness tells what he has seen and heard (Acts 4:19-20).
When on a witness stand in court, the judge is not interested in one’s ideas or opinions; he only wants to hear what you have seen or know.
One is either a witness or not a witness. A witness will have a story different from others
As a Christian baptized in the Holy Spirit, we should have stories of what we have seen and experienced. Particularly in our private lives.
There should be testimonies of His guidance, presence, teaching, direction, revelation, healing, bringing things to our remembrance,
If you have ever drunk a freshly opened Coca Cola drink, you will notice that there is a marked difference between it and one opened days ago, which has gone flat. This in a sense is the difference between a Witness and a Christian who is not baptised in the Holy Spirit.
It is possible to have a vibrant ‘effervescent like relationship with the Holy Spirit. Remember He is a gift to be received. (Acts.1.4). You cannot earn Him by fasting and prayer (though it helps). You have to wait patiently (not impatiently)-The disciples waited for 50 days – almost 2 months (Acts.2.1)
One can pray and ask God for the Holy Spir-it, trusting His loving kindness and mercy to be poured on us as individuals and as a Church Family
Once He comes, there will be a difference. And He will come because the Father does not lie. (Acts.1.4, Matt.7.7-8)
Looking again at Acts 1.8, it gives, a general outline of the Book of Acts as it describes the geographical spread of the Gospel: from Jerusalem (Acts 1-7) to Judea and Samaria (Acts 8-9), and then to the Gentiles and to the ends of the earth (Acts 10-28).
This proves that once He comes, our witness will start at home first (Jerusalem), before spreading to the church and places of work (Judea & Samaria).
After all, there is a proverb that says “Charity begins at home” .
It stands to reason that the outflow of the Ho-ly Spirit will first be seen at home amongst our family members, friends and work colleagues.
Is that your testimony?
If not, why not ask for the mercy of God to honour the cry of your heart, as you wait patiently for our God, who hears and answers prayer, to fill you afresh with His Promised Holy Spirit.
Pastor Femi Popoola
The Woman With an Awful Past and Suspicious Present
Have you failed before? Have you made decisions in the past you are ashamed of today? Have you done things you’d rather not be reminded about?
As you start a new year, be encouraged to know that Jesus knows where you are, where you have been, and what you have been.
In this story in John.4.1-18, we see Jesus ignoring the long-standing tensions between Jews and Samaritans that had developed over the years, and made a choice of going through Samaria on His way to Jerusalem. (John.4.4)
This choice he made led to the salvation of an ‘ignored’ Samaritan woman and her people. (The choices we make have an impact of people)
Jesus was tired, weary and thirsty from His journey. All 12 of His disciples had gone to the shops to buy food. (who sends 12 people to buy food for 13 people?) (John.4.8), but the Lord was preparing an environment conducive for meeting the needs of a certain Samaritan woman.
He needed to meet the woman alone.
She was a defeated woman, with little self-worth, isolated from her friends and neighbours by the wrong choices and decisions she had made.
She had tried to be friends with the other women, but nobody wanted to be friends with a woman who was married five times, would you? (John.4.18)
More worrying to the other women was that the man she was living with was not even her husband. (John.4.18). If only they knew who she really was, or what she was going through.
Wherever you are in your journey in life Jesus is interested in you and your future.
The women gossiped about her past and her present, but her creator and God was interested in her future
When other women went to fetch water early in the morning, she went around 12 noon when all the women would have left the river. (John.4.6-7)
She could handle 5 disastrous marriages, but could not deal with the whispers and gossips of women. They pointing of accusing fingers on account of both her past history and present marital status.
Anyone who yields to the Lord Jesus has a bright future, regardless of their past.
However, Jesus knew what she was going through. He also knew that deep down she didn’t want her life to be ‘skewered’ as it was.
He took a long journey, went through Samaria, sent away His disciples and broke protocol to speak to her.
Wherever you are today, whatever your situation, Jesus knows. He will climb the highest mountain just to be with you
The love Jesus has for you, (yes you) is a reckless love because He knows what you have been through in the past and what you are going through presently.
He was able to get the woman to open up to him. She admitted that she was a failure, and received what Jesus offered- salvation (John.4.15, 25-26)
Immediately she left her business and went about telling people about Jesus
In this year of Greater Things, are you ready yield to Jesus? Are you ready to serve the Lord? (John.4.28)
If you are going through a bad patch at the moment, I want you to know that the Lord knows everything about you and is willing to meet you at the point of your need.
Will you respond in faith? Will you turn to the Lord? Will you receive the love He is giving to you?
Are you born again?
Don’t be too busy for the one who will leave the 99, climb any mountain, cross any valley or swim any river just to get to you.
Why not turn to Him today?
Dear Lord, I thank you that You know what I am going through. Please come into my life today. Come and give meaning to my life. Let me be a vessel unto honour. Give me the power and grace to say no to sin. Help me to believe in you and serve you faithfully. In this year of Greater Things, open doors of opportunity for me to do great things for you Lord. Thank you, Lord. In Jesus mighty name I pray