Acts 5:42, “Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah.”
Preaching the gospel of Jesus Christ is the central theme of the entire book of Acts. The name “Acts” comes from the shortened name, “The Acts of the Apostles,” which was written by Luke, a doctor who traveled with Paul. Therefore, the book of Acts is the historical record of how the first disciples went into the world and preached the Gospel and made new disciples.
The book of Acts can be summarized from the words of Jesus found in Acts 1:8, “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” The word “witness” in the text refers to those who testify to the validity of someone’s claims. Consequently, the first disciples were to go into the entire world and testify about Jesus by preaching the gospel.
The summary of their gospel preaching (testifying) is as follows, (1) Receive the Holy Spirit: The disciples receive the Holy Spirit to be Jesus’ witnesses in Acts 2:1-14; (2) Jerusalem: The gospel is preached in Jerusalem in Acts 2:14-7; (3) Judea & Samaria: The disciples move into the Judean and Samaritan villages and cities in Acts 8-12; and lastly, (4) Ends of the Earth: Led primarily by Paul the gospel goes to the Gentiles and to the whole world via the Roman Empire!
The disciples preached the gospel everywhere despite being martyred, persecuted, and mocked. When they suffered instead of complaining they actually prayed for more boldness, Acts 4:23-31. Though they were despised in man’s eyes they kept preaching from house to house and town to town publicly because they were pleasing in God’s eyes, Acts 5:42. Everywhere they went signs, wonders, and miracles were seen as commonplace, Acts 5:15. And even entire cities heard the gospel preached at one time in mass evangelism, Acts 13:44!May we preach the gospel and make disciples with the same passion and dedication as the first disciples did and see the book of Acts in our day and in this generation!
- Take time to mediate on the powerful stories found in the book of Acts.
- Ask God to use you to do the same things the first disciples did.
- Begin to preach with the power of the Holy Spirit whenever you can and believe God to do what He did in the book of Acts!