What happens when you meet Jesus?

What happens when you meet Jesus? The Apostles

Acts 5:27-32                          April 7, 2013

History tells of a woman by the name of Rosa Parks.  She became famous 1955 for not giving up her seat on the bus.  This was important at that time.  You see, blacks were not allowed to sit in the white section of the bus.  When the white section got full, the bus driver moved the “whites only” sign and told Ms. Parks to move to the black section of the bus.  She refused.

 

Ms. Parks was arrested and her case went all the way to the Supreme Court.  It was in 1956 that the Supreme Court said that bus segregation was illegal.  Along the way to the Supreme Court, there was the 381-day Montgomery Bus Boycott.

 

An interesting thing about Rosa Parks is that she was Methodist.  That’s right; she was a member of the African Methodist Episcopal Church!  Ms. Parks had met Jesus and had followed him all of her days till she died in 2005 at the age of 92.[1]  And the world was changed because she met Jesus.

 

What happens when you meet Jesus?  For Rosa Parks, it was helping to end segregation.  For the apostles, it was a boldness that they had not shown or lived before. 

 

When we meet Jesus, we change.  For the apostles, this change drove their ministry and their lives.  For us, meeting Jesus will change us as well.  However, it may not be the change you expect.

 

  1. What activity did the apostles do that got them thrown in jail? (5:12-16)
    1. Signs & wonders
    2. Believers were added to their number – men & women
    3. Peter’s shadow fell on them & they were healed!
    4. Sick & those tormented by demons were cured
    5. The apostles were really doing well.  They were doing so well through the power of the Holy Spirit that God was adding to their number.  People were believing because they got to see loved ones healed.  Things were looking good!  But that was about to change.  The apostles were placed in jail!

 

  1. How did they get out of jail? (5:18-26)
    1. The high priest & a group of Sadducees were jealous!

–          Speaking in Jesus’ name was unlawful (4:18)

  1. The apostles were put into public prison
  2. An angel of the Lord released them & told them to speak about this life
    1. This life – John 6:63 – the spirit gives life
    2. The message of salvation & discipleship that the apostles were committed[2]
  3. The apostles went back to the Temple!

–          The Council couldn’t find them in prison

  1. Isn’t that just like God? When you get in trouble for doing right, he wants you to keep on speaking and doing right! And the apostles did this speaking.  The council wanted to know why they were doing this speaking.

 

  1. Who do we obey? (5:27-32)
    1. Temple guards quietly brought the apostles to the Sanhedrin
    2. Weren’t you to keep quiet about Jesus? (4:18)
    3. Peter replied
      1. We must obey God, rather than men (the Sanhedrin)
      2. Israel’s God raised up Jesus
      3. YOU murdered him by crucifying him
      4. God lifted him up
  • As ruler & Savior
  • Jesus grants repentance to Israel (and to us)
  • Jesus forgives sins
  1. We & the Holy Spirit are witnesses
  2. Would we have the gumption to speak like that when we are told to be quiet?  When it comes to our careers/jobs, we might not.  Peter spoke the truth.  And that is what the world needed then and what it needs now!

 

  1. How did the council respond? (5:33-40)
    1. The Council was ready to kill the apostles
    2. Gamaliel (Paul’s teacher)
      1. Examples of rebellions that died out
      2. If it is of God, then you may be fighting against God!
  2. The apostles were flogged (Deut. 25:3 – 40 lashes)
  3. Even though the truth was spoken, because the authorities were upset, the apostles were flogged.  Yes, friends, if and when you speak the truth about Jesus, the world will not like it.  You will get hurt.  Is it worth it?

 

  1. The Apostles kept on speaking Jesus’ Name (5:41-42)
    1. The apostles rejoiced they were dishonored for speaking about Jesus
    2. They kept on preaching & teaching about Jesus
    3. When the world is against you speaking about Jesus, the keep on speaking about Jesus.  You are blessed when they ridicule you.  They are doing to you what the world did to Jesus.

 

What happens when you meet Jesus?  It would seem that if you are asking the question, then maybe you have not met him yet.  When you do meet Jesus, your life will be changed.  I hope that as you talk with members of this church that you will get to know Jesus.  When you meet Jesus, you may become like the apostles and be bold when it comes to the name.  Or, when you meet Jesus, you may become bold like Rosa Parks, who lived her faith.

 

Whenever you meet Jesus and you start talking about him, then keep on talking about Jesus!  The world won’t like it.  However, it is the world that needs to hear about Jesus.


[2] Charles Yrigoyen, Jr., Acts for Our Time, (Abingdon Press, Nashville; 1992), p 40

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