Google+ 10/03/13 By Lifting Our Hands, We Will Overcome!

Acts 4:23-27

 

 As soon as they were freed,

Peter and John returned to the other believers and told them what the leading priests and elders had said.

When they heard the report, all the believers lifted their voices together in prayer to God:

“O Sovereign Lord, Creator of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them—

You spoke long ago by the Holy Spirit through our ancestor David, your servant, saying,

‘Why were the nations so angry?
    Why did they waste their time with futile plans?
The kings of the earth prepared for battle; the rulers gathered together
Against the Lord and against his Messiah.’

“In fact, this has happened here in this very city!

For Herod Antipas, Pontius Pilate the governor, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel

Were all united against Jesus, your holy servant, whom you anointed.

 

In part four of our six-part devotion series entitled, "Lifting and Loving," Luke shares testimony from Peter and John as they return from captivity and the inquisition convened against them by the chief priests.  Remember, Peter and John had healed a lame man in the name of Jesus.  Upon their report to Christ's followers, everyone lifted their hands and voices to God in prayer.  Things were tough for all believers after Jesus ascended.  Many Christians were persecuted and killed for their belief in Jesus Christ.  The chief priests and the elders forbid the teaching of Jesus.  It was during this time that Saul made a substantial living delivering Christians to the Romans, in exchange for wages.  Today, we would probably create a reality TV show called, "Saul the Bounty Hunter!"  Reality has set in with the followers of Jesus as they declare to God that everyone in their city has been united against Jesus.  In Acts 5:31 we find that the place where they were assembled was shaken by God after hearing their words.  God hears their plea and prayer and is now granting them power, in His Name, to speak boldly about Christ.  The Bible proclaims that through their prayer, they are believers with all things in common.  No one is running around yelling, "Mine...Mine!"  Even though there were poor and wealthy within the group, the Bible says that no one lacked for anything.  Everyone laid down their possessions at the feet of the apostles.  These possessions were then distributed to everyone as needed.  Notice that the Christian community was created by first lifting hands together to the Lord and loving each other.  Don't laugh at God and maintain that this kind of "church" cannot exist in today's world.  It can and our ministry is in the process of proving God's faithfulness in this area.  Today, hear the report from Peter and John.  We must realize that all is not right in the world.  We must join with our Christian brothers and sisters to right the wrongs for God.  "By Lifting Our Hands, We Will Overcome!"