But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,  and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.  —Acts 3:14-15

 And as they were speaking to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came upon them, greatly annoyed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. And they arrested them and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. But many of those who had heard the word believed, and the number of the men came to about five thousand. 5 

 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.

 But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name.” So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.” 

             You better know that there are and will be those who oppose Jesus our Lord.  Oppose Him to the point of silencing many of His followers by death— just like they sought to silence Jesus by killing Him, the Author of Life.  Think about that!  The very One who gave them life they killed on a cross.  Of course the cross and death could not hold Him and He rose from the dead!  Amen!  Jesus is alive!  But how sad that man chose a murderer to be release and condemned the Author of Life to a brutal death by crucifixion. 

            Just as Jesus was opposed so His followers will be.  Jesus told us this— “Remember what I told you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you also. If they obeyed my teaching, they will obey yours also” (John 15:20).  Yes, expect opposition as a servant of our Lord Jesus.  But also expect there will be those who will be obedient to His Word and follow Him as we are!

            Ordinary men boldly proclaimed the Author of Life, Jesus, as the only way to be saved from our sin.  They could not keep quiet but had to “speak of what (they) have seen and heard.”  Does that statement reflect our hearts?  Are we compelled out of our love for Jesus and people that we have to share the Good News with others?  When was the last time we did so?  Do we do so regularly?  If we do not then what does this say about our relationship with Jesus?  How much do we really love Him if we are not obedient to Him?  How much do we really love people is we do not tell them about Him?  Verbal abuse, arrest, physical beatings and death awaited the Apostles and other believers of the past and present who desired to be faithful witnesses.  Will you join their ranks… or keep silent?

 Dear Father may I not be silent by not be sharing the gospel of my Lord Jesus Christ.  Oh, that I would be encouraging others to call on His Name for the forgiveness of sins and to be saved to a relation with You through Him.  May this be so by the power of Your Holy Spirit and in the authority of Your Son Jesus.  May this be so!

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