I gave this lesson last night (Wednesday August 11th, 2010.) It focuses on Acts 4. This time I managed to get a recording, so I’ve attached that. With this lesson I attempted to use notes that are more in an outline format rather than writing everything down, so the transcription isn’t going to be exact. I’m trying to push myself to improve, and even though I might’ve taken a step backwards in delivery (lots of uhms and ahs) I feel that I myself have improved on being able to improvise a bit more rather than having it all scripted.
Again, thank you to all the members of the congregation for all your kind words. I really appreciate it!
Intro: Acts 4
- Favorite passage is in Acts 4
- My bible has the heading ‘Prayer for Boldness’ at vs 23
- The church is praying to God to give them boldness in speaking the word
- This has helped me in the past in getting up in front of people to deliver lessons
- Shows that even the early church had fears they needed to overcome
- Lets look at all of chapter 4 and we’ll see the four things the early church did that helped them gain boldness as Christians
- Followed those that set an example
- Beginning of the chapter: Peter and John
- Preached Jesus and the resurrection – 5000 men believed
- Sanhedrin arrested them, and even while surrounded, still preached
- Vs 13 mentions that even the Sanhedrin recognized this boldness
- The elders and other men of our congregation step up regularly and provide an example of boldness
- Missionaries like Christina’s mom
- The young men leading prayers, leading singing, giving lessons… At their age I was a big chicken and didn’t dare to try to overcome my fears.
- Examples we may not think about:
- Hannah understanding the truth and being baptized
- Tell other Christians so they can help
- After being threatened Peter and John went and told the church vs 23
- They sought comfort and strength in the family that God has provided.
- Paul – Gal 6:2 – "Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ."
- We cannot bear each others burdens without first baring our burdens to one another
- God has given us each other as a support group.
- Several years ago when I first started attending Grandview Pines, I asked David if he would talk to the elders about opening up Wednesday night devotionals to the men of the congregation — so that some day when I felt comfortable enough I would have the opportunity to get up here and preach.
- Since then, you’ve all poked, prodded, and encouraged me to get up here.
- I would not be able to be up here if it weren’t for my Christian brothers and sisters!
- Vs 24-29 The church asked God for help: "Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word"
- James 1:5 – "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting."
- When we need strength, ask God without hesitation — He will provide!
- Just Do it!
- Vs 31 And when they had prayed…they spoke the word of God with boldness.
- Having examples to follow, asking people for help, and praying for God’s blessings will not get you anywhere if you at some point you don’t just do it!
- As David said in his lesson Sunday, "Man Up!"
Not just referring to public speaking. All parts of our lives as Christians require boldness.
- Bold Choices
- Movies and TV shows we choose to watch or music that you listen to
- Have you ever changed the channel or walked out of a theatre because the content in the movie was not something that a Christian should dwell on? Phil 4
- People we choose to spend time with
- Sometimes this is the hardest part – people we thought were friends are actually horrible influences on us against Christ
- Prov 1:8-19 Talks about this exact thing.
Vs 15: "My son, do not walk in the way with them,
Keep your foot from their path; "
- We have to do the right thing and make that difficult break for the sake of our own souls.
- Lewd Jokes
- Ever stopped someone in the middle of a joke they were telling just because it wasn’t something that should be told
- Standing up against those making fun of or talking about people – Titus 3:2 "speak evil of no one"
- Backing up those who are standing up for Christ
- Much easier to be bold when we have others being bold with us. That goes back to having an example to follow and asking others for help.
- Finally – Realizing that we’ve sinned and making it right with God
- Everyone has sinned. Rom. 3:2
- Everyone has an opportunity to overcome that sin.
- A Christian: Repentance — not just an apology, but a desire and bold attempt to resist further temptations — is required to overcome sin
- A non-Christian:
- Must hear the word of God – Not a miraculous voice, but a simple study of the scriptures. Romans 10:17
- Believe that word – Hebrews 11:6
- Repent of Sin – just as it is for the Christian it’s not just an apology, but a desire and bold attempt to resist further temptations – Acts 17:30
- Confess that Christ is the Son of God – Matthew 10:32
- Baptized for the remission of sins Acts 2:38 — Not a washing away of filth, but the answer of a good conscience toward God. 1 Peter 3:21
- Strive to be Faithful and BOLD
- Heb 3:12-14 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we have become partakers of Christ if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast to the end
If you have failed to be a BOLD Christian and need our help and prayers or if you need to step up and make that BOLD decision to be a Christian, come tonight as we stand and sing.