19th May 2022

 The certainty of things

…since I myself have carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I too decided to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.
Luke 1:3-4 (NIVUK)

Luke wrote a two-volume history of Christianity, the Gospel of Luke, and the book of Acts. Before writing his books, Luke carefully investigated the accounts handed down from eyewitnesses (v.2). The prime reason for writing these books was not just to give information but to convey certainty so that the reader ‘may know the certainty of the things you have been taught.’

Luke summarises his gospel when stating, ‘…I wrote about all that Jesus began to do and to teach until the day he was taken up to heaven…’ (Acts 1:1-2). The gospel deals essentially with Jesus’ earthly life and work. The book of Acts opens with Luke explaining how Jesus continued to give convincing proofs by appearing to the apostles after his resurrection: ‘…he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God.’ (Acts 1:3)

These appearances to the apostles culminated in the ascension of Jesus and the certain promise that he, ‘will come back in the same way you have seen him go into heaven’ (Acts 1:11). They were also instructed not to worry about the times and dates of that occurrence.

These eye-witness accounts and convincing proofs gave certainty to the events of Jesus’ life: his incarnation, ministry, death, resurrection, and ascension, which are the core of the gospel message and reveal Jesus to be the unique saviour of humanity.

This certainty, coupled with the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, gave the disciples the willingness to engage with the Greco-Roman, pagan world, in order to preach the gospel. The book of Acts highlights what the resurrected and ascended Jesus continued to do and teach through his church, inspired and empowered by the Holy Spirit, and spearheaded by the Apostles.

Inspired by the Holy Spirit and with the confidence that comes from Christ through a knowledge, understanding, and belief in the scriptures, Christians today are called to play their part in spreading the gospel into the prevailing culture of our times.

Prayer
Father, help us to have the confidence and wisdom to spread your gospel of reconciliation into an increasingly hostile world. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Study by Eddie Marsh 

About the writer:
Eddie Marsh attends the Sheffield congregation of race Communion International.

Local congregation:
Please email the local congregational contact (see below) for information about the Sheffield congregation’s meeting venue and time. 

Local congregational contact:
Email: sheffield@gracecom.church

Word of Life contact:
wordoflife@gracecom.church