A Brave Witness Leads To Unexpected Impact
And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith. — Acts 6:7
So once some order is reestablished in the church, and the teachers get back to teaching, there is another increase in numbers. But notice what happens — "a great number of priests became obedient to the faith."
So here is the situation. In Israel, during this time, there were a large number of poor priests. Some historians estimate as many as 8,000. And three issues put these poor priests at odds with the high priestly council. The first issue was that poor priests received little financial support from the high priestly leaders during Roman reign. And get this financial support was supposed to trickle down to them as dictated by Hebrew Law. This meant poor priests had to find ways to support themselves, leaving them embittered against the council financially. The second issue was that poor priests lacked influence because of their poverty and had little in common with the wealth and influence of the Sadducean aristocracy on the high priestly council. The third and growing issue was that they disagreed with how the high priestly council was handling present matters related to this growing Christian movement. And so, all this resulted in mass support for the Gospel.
I think sometimes I underestimate what God is doing. This is because all I see is the opposition that lies before me. Therefore I fail to see God's bigger picture and how he is laying the groundwork for a groundswell. And all God wants from me is a brave witness for the truth in the uncertainty that exposes corruption and leads others to see the truth and witness for the truth. And I don't know why I hesitate when the bible is full of stories of men and women of faith who have stood up against the opposition whose brave witness has started a groundswell.
Right now, in our world, I believe there is a quiet movement. Even though we don't see it, God is preparing the groundwork for a groundswell. And what God seeks are brave men and women who will share a brave witness to the truth. But we cannot hesitate! We must take a stand of faith against the corruption of the opposition and trust that God will persuade others to join us in pursuit of the truth. The issue is not what God is doing or what others need to do. The issue is will you be brave with me and witness to the truth regardless of what may come to pass.
ASK THIS: What is holding you back from sharing the Gospel truth?
DO THIS: Overcome your fears by sharing this truth.
PRAY THIS: God, prepare me to be your leader, in your way, and in your time.
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Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.