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Bobby Stafford The Book of Acts 1:1-5    

The Book of Acts

Chapter 1:1-5

Verse 1  Acts 1:1The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach.”  NKJV  Acts is in many ways a continuation of Luke’s account of the gospel.  In Luke and Acts, we have a record of what Jesus began to do and was continuing to do through His apostles and other Christians.  Both are addressed to Theophilus, a name meaning “friend of God” or “loved of God.”  The phrase “most excellent” suggests a government official.  So the purpose of these two letters was to inform him about the life of Christ and the beginning and growth of the church.  Luke and Acts account for over 25% of the New Testament.  The writer, Luke, was a Gentile physician.  Colossians 4:14Luke the beloved physician and Demas greet you.”  NKJV

Verse 2  Acts 1:2 “until the day in which He was taken up, after He through the Holy Spirit had given commandments to the apostles whom He had chosen,”  NKJV  Acts takes up where the gospel left off with the ascension of Christ.  The commandments referred to would include the great commission and the instructions to remain in Jerusalem until the Holy Spirit came upon them.  Luke 24:46-49  “Then He said to them, Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.  And you are witnesses of these things.  Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”  NKJV

Verse 3  Acts 1:3 “to whom He also presented Himself alive after His suffering by many infallible proofs, being seen by them during forty days and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.”  NKJV  Jesus appeared on several occasions to numerous witnesses during the forty days after His resurrection.  These served as infallible and convincing proofs that He was alive though He had been dead.  Note I Corinthians 15:3-8.  “For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received:  that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures, and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve.  After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep.  After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles.  Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time.”  NKJV

His recorded appearances: 

·  Mary Magdalene and other women  John 20:11-16But Mary stood outside by the tomb weeping, and as she wept she stooped down and looked into the tomb.  And she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.  Then they said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’  She said to them, ‘Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him.’  Now when she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, and did not know that it was Jesus.  Jesus said to her, ‘Woman, why are you weeping?  Whom are you seeking?’  She, supposing Him to be the gardener, said to Him, ‘Sir, if You have carried Him away, tell me where You have laid Him, and I will take Him away.’  Jesus said to her, ‘Mary!’  She turned and said to Him, ‘Rabboni!’ (which is to say, Teacher).”  NKJV  Matthew 28:8-10So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.  And as they went to tell His disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, ‘Rejoice!’  So they came and held Him by the feet and worshiped Him.  Then Jesus said to them, ‘Do not be afraid.  Go and tell My brethren to go to Galilee, and there they will see Me.”  NKJV

·  Two disciples on the road to Emmaus  Luke 24:13-27  15“So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them.  25Then He said to them, ‘O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!  26Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?’  27And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.”  NKJV

·  Peter by himself  I Corinthians 15:5  “and that He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve.”  NKJV

·  The apostles without Thomas  John 20:19-20, 24  “Then, the same day at evening, being the first day of the week, when the doors were shut where the disciples were assembled, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in the midst, and said to them, ‘Peace be with you.’  When He had said this, He showed them His hands and His side.  Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord.  24 Now Thomas, called the Twin, one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came.”  NKJV

·  The apostles with Thomas  John 20:26-28And after eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them.  Jesus came, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, ‘Peace to you!”  NKJV

·  Seven disciples by the Sea of Tiberias  John 21:1-2, 12  “After these things Jesus showed Himself again to the disciples at the Sea of Tiberias, and in this way He showed Himself:  Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of His disciples were together.  12 Jesus said to them, ‘Come and eat breakfast.’  Yet none of the disciples dared ask Him, ‘Who are You? ‘– knowing that it was the Lord.”  NKJV

·  Five hundred brethren at once  I Corinthians 15:6  “After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep.”  NKJV 

·  James the Lord’s brother  I Corinthians 15:7After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles.”  NKJV

·  All the apostles  I Corinthians 15:7  (above)

The resurrection forever changed the lives of the apostles.  Their lives were totally transformed.  They suffered persecution and hardships.  Many died for the cause.  I Corinthians 4:9-13  “For I think that God has displayed us, the apostles, last, as men condemned to death; for we have been made a spectacle to the world, both to angels and to men.  We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ!  We are weak, but you are strong!  You are distinguished, but we are dishonored!  To the present hour we both hunger and thirst, and we are poorly clothed, and beaten, and homeless.  And we labor, working with our own hands.  Being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we endure; being defamed, we entreat.  We have been made as the filth of the world, the offscouring of all things until now.”  NKJV

Jesus spoke to them about the “Kingdom of God.”  He probably told that anyone [Jew or Gentile] could be a part of the Kingdom and that Jesus would always be with them.  Matthew 28:18-20And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age. Amen.”  NKJV  Apparently, He did not reveal when it would be established.

Verses 4-5  Acts 1:4-5And being assembled together with them, He commanded them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the Promise of the Father, which, He said, ‘you have heard from Me; for John truly baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”  NKJV  The promise referred to the coming of the Holy Spirit which Jesus had told them about on the night of His betrayal. 

John 14:26But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you."  NKJV  John 15:26-27But when the Helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of Me.  And you also will bear witness, because you have been with Me from the beginning.”  NKJV  John 16:12-13I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot hear them now.  However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.”  NKJV

Jerusalem was prophesied as the city where the Kingdom would begin.  Isaiah 2:1-4The word that Isaiah the son of Amoz saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.  Now it shall come to pass in the latter days That the mountain of the Lord’s house Shall be established on the top of the mountains, And shall be exalted above the hills; And all nations shall flow to it.  Many people shall come and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, To the house of the God of Jacob; He will teach us His ways, And we shall walk in His paths.  For out of Zion shall go forth the law, And the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.  He shall judge between the nations, And rebuke many people; They shall beat their swords into plowshares, And their spears into pruning hooks; Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, Neither shall they learn war anymore.”  NKJV

The baptism of the Holy Spirit was promised to the apostles within a few days.  Luke 24:49  “Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high.”  NKJV 

Bobby Stafford 

January 21, 2015 

Lesson 1: Acts 1:1-5

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