From Dave Runkel
The original plan was for me to write the March Elder’s Corner while Susie Pike would author the February edition. We traded assignments so Susie could help all of us take a prayerful look at our Lenten journey. So, February is the month of Valentine celebrations with emphasis on Love. I did some study on Valentine’s Day, Saint Valentine’s Day and some the other February highlights. Those original thoughts were waning, so I decided to read my daily Bible study and the Holy Spirit saved the day again.
Many of our readings this month are coming from the Acts of The Apostles. For me the Acts of the Apostles or the book of Acts is without a doubt my favorite book in the Bible. This book allows the reader and me to see how our Triune God working in concert with each other selected mortal women and men to build Christ’s Church on this sinful earth. Think of this book as an extension of Luke’s Gospel in which he provides us with a family history of Elizabeth and Mary in the context of the world’s activities. The birth, life and ministry of John the Baptist is included. God’s plan for John unfolded allowing us to witness the Holy Spirit’s power in John’s life as it relates to Christ’s life, death and resurrection. The foundation for Christ’s Church on Earth and the evangelistic expansion is documented in the Acts of The Apostles. What amazes the reader in Acts is the Holy Spirit capturing common people’s hearts and minds, allowing them to do more than they were capable of doing, however they did it through the Holy Spirit and their love for Christ.
Such as Peter, the same man who denied knowledge of Jesus three times to a young servant girl after Jesus was captured. However, this is the same common man who stood strong and full of the Holy Spirit in front of a large group of multinationals proclaiming that same Christ as our Savior just several weeks after his original denial of Christ. At this point he is truly one of the men Jesus selected to fulfill God’s plan. One of the men God wanted to bring the Jews to Christ is the same man who stated the faith foundation for Christ’s Church. Peter is not the only apostle to feel the Holy Spirit’s strength, but all the apostles.
Another primary character in Acts of the Apostles is Saul of Tarsus, his Jewish name is better known in the Christian Community as St. Paul. God’s plan called for a man of numerous abilities, especially critical capabilities, to move and speak in both the Jewish and Roman societies. The man God selected was Saul, a zealot who required a change in mind, philosophy and theology. This conversion was not subtle but major. From a conspirator in murder to the one targeted for murder. From a hater of Christ to the primary missionary for Christ. How was this done? God the Father identified Paul as a major piece for the success of His plan. Jesus the Savior provided the message required to shock Saul to change his way of life, and the Holy Spirit allowed Paul to open his mind and heart to his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
It has been noted that this book could be called “The Acts of the Holy Spirit.” This book also shows us love. The love of God for His people. In this book we are enlightened by seeing common people doing beyond common work for the love of Christ. This book awakens our faith by showing the triumphant of the Good News to the gentiles and the world. This book illustrates the love of God’s people for their Savior and the people of God loving each other. Our God is Love!
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