Jesus after Easter (a 50-day series), “In those days, Peter stood up…”

Most of us long for miracles.  And Jesus’ perfect life, death on sinners’ behalf as the fulfillment of Passover, and His physical resurrection prove that He is willing and able to meet our greatest needs:  complete forgiveness and a new heart to follow Him as our living King.  But even in the Bible, most of the journey with Jesus is lived in the moments between miracles.  In this 50-day series, we’ll consider some of those moments leading up to the next great miracle in the New Testament:  the fulfillment of Pentecost and the incredible growth of the Church.

 

Leadership is a strange thing.  Some don’t want it but get tasked to do it and struggle forward.  Others seek it but, for different reasons, can’t seem to gather a following.  Still others are called by God to do it and, therefore, necessarily experience measures of success.  The Lord Jesus seems to have made it clear that Peter was to be a leader among the disciples (Luke 22:31-32, John 21:15-17, )  Matthew 10:1-3 and Luke 6:12-16 also consistently name him first in the lists of the Apostles (with Judas being last, by the way).

And in the beginning, Peter often stepped up to lead, although not necessarily in the best ways.  We might say that He tested Jesus (or at least only partially believed Jesus) when Peter asked to come to Him on the water and then sank. (Matthew 14:28ff)  Peter did recognize Jesus as the Messiah but then almost as quickly tried to rebuke the Lord for foretelling His coming suffering and death. (Matthew 16:13-23)  He also approved of the Lord’s meeting with Moses and Elijah (as if Jesus needed his approval) but then proposed setting up three tents as if they might stay there on the mountaintop experience and never leave. (Matthew 17:1ff)

Now in Acts 1:15ff, Peter stands up, not in self-confidence, but in Christ-confidence and rallies the other disciples.  Judas had betrayed the Lord, as was prophesied, and needed to be replaced.  Peter was prompting them to continue the mission with a man who also had been with Jesus from the beginning and was a witness of Jesus’ resurrection.  (Acts 1:21-22)  Peter’s focus was less on himself and more on spreading the message of their living Lord Jesus.

The Lord has called or will call all of us to lead in one way or another.  He calls husbands are to lead their wives, parents to lead their children, supervisors to lead their employees, and all of His people to lead others’ to faith and obedience to Him by our witness of life and word to them.  And our confidence to stand up is to come by our faith in Him, not faith in ourselves.

Whom has the Lord given you to lead?  And how has He revealed Himself to be your confidence and passion?  Reflect on His work in Scripture and your own life.  He has work for each of His people to do, and He is their great help and certain hope.

 

I hope today’s thought and others in this series will be helpful to you as you journey with Jesus in the moments between miracles.

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If you’d like to know more about who publishes the articles, videos, and other materials on tools4trenches, you can click on the picture of me and my wife.

 

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