Rev. Dr. Jeffrey Oschwald, professor of exegetical theology at Concordia Seminary in St. Louis, MO, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Acts 1:1-11.
In his Gospel, St. Luke told what Jesus began to do and teach. Now, in Acts, St. Luke tells what Jesus continues to do and teach through His Word proclaimed in the Church. Acts was written to Theophilus in order to show how the Word of the Lord continued to grow and bear fruit through the proclamation of the work of the apostles. Though Peter and Paul tend to be the dominant human actors, the Word of the Lord does all the work in the book of Acts. The account begins where the Gospel ended: the ascension of Jesus. His teaching for forty days after His resurrection was all about the kingdom of God. When the disciples asked if there was still a role for them in that kingdom, Jesus promised that they would be witnesses of all that He had done and would continue to do. They watched as Jesus’ ascended into heaven, hidden by a cloud, until two angels told them that Jesus would return the way they saw Him go. As the ascended Lord, Jesus continues as the trailblazer for His people; where He is, there we too will be.
“To the End of the Earth” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that goes through the book of Acts. In his second volume, St. Luke records all the things that Jesus continued to do through the ministry of His Church. By the end of the book, the proclamation of the Lord’s Word that began in Jerusalem grows all the way to Rome. By God’s grace, even now, that same Word is proclaimed to us.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
The Promise of the Holy Spirit
1 In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, 2 until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3 He presented himself alive to them after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God.
4 And while staying[a] with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with[b] the Holy Spirit not many days from now.”
6 So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” 7 He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” 9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven.”
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. esv.org