1:1 ¶ The first account I composed, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach, 2 until the day when He was taken up, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen. 3 To these He also presented Himself alive, after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days, and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God. 4 And gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, “Which,” He said, “You heard of from Me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” (Acts 1:1-5).
- What is the basic difference between the Book of Acts and the Gospels?
- Who was it that wrote Acts? Who did he write to? Why?
- Read Acts 1:1-3 carefully and observe where the Gospels end and Acts begins. (Compare Luke 1:1-4 if you wish).
- What do we know of what Jesus taught from His resurrection to His ascension? Look at Luke 24 if needed.
- Over how long a period did Jesus reveal Himself and teach His disciples (Acts 1:3)? Where else is this number used in the scriptures?
- What is it that Jesus spoke of during this time period (Acts 1:3)? What does this phrase mean? Do we think of our faith in these terms? Why or why not?
- What was the command to Christ’s disciples in Acts 1:4? Did they obey?
- What was the reason for this command? Did Jesus say (Acts 1:5)? What does it mean?
6 ¶ And so when they had come together, they were asking Him, saying, “Lord, is it at this time You are restoring the kingdom to Israel?” 7 He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or epochs which the Father has fixed by His own authority; 8 but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” 9 And after He had said these things, He was lifted up while they were looking on, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And as they were gazing intently into the sky while He was departing, behold, two men in white clothing stood beside them; 11 and they also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:6-11).
What is it that the disciples asked Jesus in verse 6? Why do you think they asked this question? (If time allows, go through the Book of Luke and pick out verses that spoke about the disciples’ expectations and how they often got them into trouble).
Tell the meaning of Jesus’ words in verse 7 in your own words. Do you ever have such questions? Does it matter? Why or why not?
What does Jesus say in Acts 1:8 that they will experience?
What does the phrase ‘receive the Holy Spirit’ mean? Was this only for them or for others like us? In what way? Didn’t they already have the Holy Spirit? Compare Ephesians 1:13.
How was this work of the Spirit going to help them? Where will they be His witnesses?
What does ‘witness’ mean (cf. Nu 35:30; De 19:15; Rev 3:14)? Were they? How does it apply to us or should it?
What other Biblical passages have this same or similar meaning?
What happened after Jesus said these things (1:9-11)?
Where is Jesus now? What does it state about the future? What does Jesus leave His disciples to do in the meantime? How does that expectation affect our own lives?
Further Discussion on Missions