So then, exalted to the right hand of God, and having received the promise of the Holy Spirit from the Father, he has poured out what you both see and hear. (Acts 2:25-33)
Now Peter explains why all this talk about Jesus is important. He argues that the resurrection of Jesus, in light of David’s prophetic words about the Messiah, proves him to be the Messiah. This is a shocking revelation. When God spoke of a King who would establish the eternal Kingdom of God, they had something more military in mind. They did not expect such humility. They did not expect his humiliating death on the cross. They did not expect his resurrection. But Peter points out that they should have expected it because David spoke about it. Jesus is the fulfillment of God’s promises to Abraham (in your descendant I will bless all the families of the earth
) and to David (your descendant will sit on your throne forever
But where are the armies? Where are the officials and governors? Where is the nation-building that everyone expected the Messiah to do? How is the Messiah going to establish his Kingdom? The answer lies before them. Jesus, exalted after his death and resurrection to the right hand of the Father (as in Daniel’s vision), received the Father’s promise of the Holy Spirit. He received from the Father, not only the eternal Kingdom, but also the means to establish and propagate it: the Holy Spirit.
So, Jesus has poured out the Holy Spirit. This is the way in which he will establish his Kingdom. Through the witness of his disciples, Jesus will grant the gift of the Holy Spirit to any who believe. The Holy Spirit will transform every believer and seal him or her for eternity. Thus the Kingdom expands, thus it conquers its foes. It is a non-violent expansion. So it is that the mighty Roman Empire fell, crumbled to the ground, but not because Christians took up arms against it. The Kingdom has spread through human history to this very day by the same method: the gift of the Holy Spirit given in response to faith upon the witness of disciples. This Holy Spirit has empowered the participants of the Kingdom for all the work of the Kingdom. If this work is to be summed up in the book of Acts, it would be described as Witness.
This Sunday, April 22, 2012, I will be preaching from Acts 2:25-33. Worship begins at 10:45 am. Come and join us, 3201 W 15th St. Plano, TX 75075. Video and audio of the sermon is posted during the week at our website: www.pcbcplano.org
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