“He also said to them,
“This is what is written: The Messiah will suffer and rise from the dead the third day, 47 and repentance for forgiveness of sins will be proclaimed in his name to all the nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 You are witnesses of these things. 49 And look, I am sending you what my Father promised. As for you, stay in the city until you are empowered from on high.”
Luke 24:46-49, CSB (vv. 44-49)
His power is critical. These verses are packed full of really strong things. You can’t minimize any issue in this passage without damaging something that matters. I don’t intend to do that. For me, everything he says is crucial. I hope I won’t diminish anything that he has spoken to us.
- There’s the issue of Jesus’ death and resurrection. We can’t minimize this. It’s the most astonishing event in history. It becomes our message.
- There’s the critical need of repentance and forgiveness of sins. This is something that needs to be heard. The whole world must understand what has happened, and how they must respond.
- The disciples of Jesus know this, they understand, and they’re the witnesses of everything Jesus did. All that they saw and learned, isn’t for them, but for others.
But the real significance is becoming empowered from God. They must operate out of what God has promised to them. There’s power coming, God’s electricity is going to meet every circumstances they’ll face. People are going to be shocked by what’s going to happen.
They need to wait for Him though.
Power is coming–they need to hold on. They will witness, and testify about Jesus. They’re being sent, but not in their own strength or effort–but with the father’s power. The gift isn’t given for their enjoyment, but for his work.
The Holy Spirit is the electricity that gives the kingdom its power. Any substitute will mean failure, and weakness.
We operate only when we are filled with his Spirit. There’s going to be incredible obstacles, but we’ll have insurmountable power. The Word we preach must be done with his power, orders, authority. The message is one of repentance and forgiveness, a proclamation of spiritual deliverance. And it begins in an upper room in Jerusalem.
What will happen there will be forever known as Pentecost.