“But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: andn ye shall be witnesses unto me. both in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.”
The word, “witnesses,” is one of the most important words in the Book of Acts. A witness is simply someone who testifies to what they have personally experienced, seen, or heard. Never has a more important assignment been given to a less qualified group of people than in Acts 1:8. Jesus tells His followers that they will be His witnesses to the entire world.
These were not intellectuals, PhDs, or gifted public speakers. They were definitely lower class in that day – farmers, fishermen, hated tax collectors, etc. Not to mention that Peter had already denied Jesus three times on the night of His arrest; and Thomas had to physically touch Jesus’ nail-scarred hands to believe He had risen from the dead. Yet Jesus, with 100% confidence, predicted that this band of misfits would be successful witnesses of the most important story in human history – the story of salvation. He didn’t say, “You might be My witnesses,” or, “You could be My witnesses.” He said, “ You will be My witnesses.”
Who exactly is the, “you,” Jesus was talking to? In place of the word “you” we can insert our own name. Jesus didn’t qualify that pronoun. He didn’t say, “You eleven male disciples.” He didn’t say, “You church pastors,” or, “You seminary graduates.” He simply said, “you.” That is every disciple; it is all of us.
Because of the power of the Holy Spirit in us, God has equipped all believers to be witnesses for Christ. Often times, witnessing is thought of as a sales pitch for Jesus. However we should not think of ourselves as salespeople. We aren’t trying to sell anyone anything. We aren’t trying to force anything on anyone. That isn’t what a witness does. God has not called us to be His prosecuting attorney or defense counsel. He has called us to be His witnesses. A witness is simply someone who shares his or her story.
I want to challenge you the reader. You cannot hear the Gospel, know the Gospel, believe the Gospel, and be changed by the Gospel and then sit on the sidelines and never share the Gospel. God has equipped you to go beyond the borders of your own comfort zone to bear witness of what He has done in your life.
Are you a spectator or a witness? ! ! ! A very sobering question.
Dear LORD, I have a desire, a drive, within me to be a strong witness. I am very much aware, LORD, I can do nothing on my own. I may be like those in the Scripture, who are referred to as “Ignorant and unlearned, but oh LORD God, let it be in me like the rest of that scripture; “they are ignorant and unlearned, but we perceive they have been with the LORD!” May people see me as one who has been with the LORD! Amen.