In my last post, we completed the mini-series of Kefa Heals a Disabled Beggar ~ Part 5. In this post, we pick up where we left off in our last series, where we learn that after being freed, Kefa and Yochanan Attend a Prayer Meeting.
23 Upon being released, they went back to their friends and reported what the head cohanim and elders had said to them. 24 When they heard it, they raised their voices to God with singleness of heart. “Master,” they prayed, “You made heaven, earth, the sea, and everything in them.
Why, at the beginning of their prayer, do these Messianic Jews remind God that He made heaven, earth, the sea, and everything in them? Not only because it is pointless for mere human beings to fight God (vv. 25-28 see below), but because the talmidim are praying that God will sovereignly give the Messiah’s slaves (see v. 29) power to speak [God’s] message with boldness (vv. 29-31).
25 By the Ruach HaKodesh, through the mouth of our father David, your servant, you said,
‘Why did the nations rage and the peoples devise useless plans? 26 The kings of the earth took their stand, and the rulers assembled together against Adonai and against his Messiah.’
The Book of Acts quotes the Greek of the Septuagint. The Hebrew for Psalm 2:1-2 reads:
Why are the nations in an uproar?
And why do the peoples mutter in vain?
The kings of the earth arise
And the rulers take counsel together
Against Adonai and against his Messiah.
Jewish writings often call attention to a text by citing its beginning; therefore, the reader should understand that the Believers’ prayer of vv. 24-30 is permeated by all of Psalm 2, not just its initial verses. Jewish as well as Christian expositors have seen Psalm 2 as Messianic.
27 “This has come true in this city, since Herod and Pontius Pilate, with Goyim and the peoples of Isra’el, all assembled against your holy servant Yeshua, whom you made Messiah, 28 to do what your power and plan had already determined beforehand should happen.
Goyim and the peoples of Isra’el had united in opposition to God’s holy Servant Yeshua and His followers. Then and now, Believers take comfort in knowing that Yeshua’s sufferings (as well as our own) are not by chance but are determined by God.
29 “So now, Lord, take note of their threats; and enable your slaves to speak your message with boldness!
The early Believers recognized that just as Yeshua had been promised trouble, they too would encounter persecution for proclaiming Him as Messiah. They asked God for the power to speak your message with boldness, even if the punishment should follow.
30 Stretch out your hand to heal and to do signs and miracles through the name of your holy servant Yeshua!”
Besides boldness in testifying, the early Believers expected to receive power from God to heal and to do signs and miracles through the name of your holy servant Yeshua!”
31 While they were still praying, the place where they were gathered was shaken. They were all filled with the Ruach HaKodesh, and they spoke God’s message with boldness.
They were all filled with the Ruach HaKodesh. Some of them had been filled before (2:4), but Ephesians 5:18 instructs Believers to keep being filled with the Ruach. They spoke God’s message with boldness. This is a sure sign of being filled with the Ruach, and it is also the purpose of the filling (1:8). A word of caution: this verse should not be used as a proof text for speaking in tongues. That’s not the context.
32 All the many believers were one in heart and soul, and no one claimed any of his possessions for himself, but everyone shared everything he had. ~ Acts 4:23-32 (CJB)
In my next post, we will expand on verse 32 when we learn that sharing everything leads to trouble in the Body of Believers.