My God, You are sovereign; in every situation. I trust that You are on the throne.
Read Acts 4:23–31
The Believers Pray
23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:
“‘Why do the nations rage
and the peoples plot in vain?
26 The kings of the earth rise up
and the rulers band together
against the Lord
and against his anointed one.[a]’[b]
27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
New International Version (NIV)Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectWhat does the presence of God mean to you? As you come to today’s reading, follow the example of the disciples and acknowledge the greatness of our Sovereign Lord (24).
I honestly don’t know how I would have reacted if I had been either Peter, John, or one of the believers at this point. Perhaps a ‘Phew, that was a close shave! Better keep our heads down now’ would have been tempting. Instead, they prayed for boldness to keep going (29). God was clearly pleased with their prayers as He filled them again with His Spirit and with such power that it would have registered on the Richter scale, if it had been invented (31)!
The believers’ prayers didn’t begin by asking God for boldness. Instead, they started by focusing on the greatness of God (24). When we pray, if we start with the sovereignty of God – grounded in Scripture (25, 26) – our faith can be fueled and our perspective refreshed.
The believers weren’t unaware of their opposition and its serious intent (29), but the clarity they had of God’s greatness, together with being caught up by God’s purpose (28), meant they were committed to speaking truthfully and boldly, no matter what (29). They also expected to witness signs and wonders and for God to continue healing people (30).
How do you respond when you experience opposition or coolness in your faith? Try praying like these early believers and see what God will do in your life.
Spirit of God, I know that You are so much bigger than my understanding. Have Your way in my life today; do as You will
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