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Introduction to Acts of the Apostles I

Apr 21, 2017 05:49 AM EDT

Introduction

The book of Acts is the book that records the activities of the early church apostles. In English, ACTS is plural. It is the act of many apostles. However, the book of Acts records primarily the acts of Peter (Chapter 2-5, 9-12) and Paul (Chapters 8-10, 13-28). The works of other apostles are very briefly recorded only for the Apostle John (Chapter 3-5) who co-ministered with Peter and for James, who was recorded that "He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword." (Acts 12: 2).

In the book of Acts, Peter's actions are the main and lead the gospel work in the early part, but Paul's actions in Asia and Europe through three outreach trips, are mainly recorded later. Peter is the representative of the church in Jerusalem centered on the disciples of Jesus, and Paul is representative of the Gentile church centering on Antioch.

In the book of Acts, the lives of many apostles were not recorded, and were recorded in very limited quantities. Nevertheless, it is important that the book of Acts is the only document that records the early church apostles. Through this book of Acts, we can see what kind of community the Early Church has made up, and how they had lived to achieve the Great Commission that Jesus told the apostles in Matthew 28:18-20. And the full sacrifice and devotion, efforts and tears of the apostles struggled to obey the will of the Lord.

Without the Acts, it would be very difficult to understand the lives of the early churches and apostles. We would never have known the first figure of the church. Acts 2 and 3 show us what the real churches and Disciples of Christ should look like through the records of the early church, the life of the apostles, and the evangelism of them which is stained by their blood and tears. This is an essential aspect to be restored by churches and believers who are becoming increasingly distant from Christ and the apostolicity today. Although all of the acts were not recorded in the book, we should be thankful for the record of the precious history that God has left for us. Through the book of Acts, we will see the true image of the Church and the true faith.

The book of Acts is the history book that records the life of the apostles. While the Gospel is the biography of Jesus Christ, the book of Acts records the way of the apostles who walked to the end of the earth to extend the church which was bought by the blood of Jesus. While Jesus Christ began the work of the gospel in Galilee and brought it to Jerusalem, the disciples extended the history of the gospel from Galilee to Samaria, and finally they entered Rome. The book of Acts ends in Chapter 28 with the scene where the apostle Paul entered Rome and taught the Words in his rented house. Paul boldly proclaims the kingdom of God, and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ, that no one has forbidden it (Acts 28:30-31). This is the assurance of the apostles that this work will go on vigorously to the ends of the earth. It is up to the Christians who are Disciples of Christ of this age to carry on the history of the gospel that Christ had worked for the kingdom of God with shedding His blood, to the end of the earth. Hopefully, as we study the book of Acts, we will be blessed with full awareness of the historical mission to be followed by Christ and the Apostles of the Early Church.