Victoria Fellowship Church (VFC)
International and Interdenominational
House Fellowship for week commencing 2nd of August 2015
Quarter Theme: A Revived Church: Lessons from the Acts of the Apostles
Topic: Walking In Boldness
Texts: Acts 4: 1-31 ; 5:26-29
Memory Verse: Acts 4:13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marvelled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.
Another characteristics of a revived Church is that it walks in boldness. For boldness to be boldness in the particular case with the early church, we need to understand the perspective under which they operated and witnessed. The dictionary defines boldness as follows: the quality of standing out strongly and distinctly or the trait of being willing to undertake things that involve risk or danger. Here, we have the first scenario in the book of Acts 4: 1- 3. The Sadducees were greatly disturbed for the gains the early church were making for two reasons. First, the Sadducees were sceptics who rejected all the Old Testament except the books of Moses, and who denied the resurrection from the dead. Peter’s teaching about the resurrection challenged their beliefs and teaching. Secondly, the Sadducees were leaders of the Jews at that time. They came from wealthy families and consorted with the Roman government in order to maintain their position, influence, and wealth. The last thing the Sadducees wanted was for a couple of Jewish men to declare the resurrection of a king.
The second scenario was in Acts 4:14–18 The Sanhedrin knew that the miracle was real. The apostles offered their explanation: The miracles were the work of the resurrected Christ. But instead of believing, the members of the Sanhedrin concerned themselves with “damage control.” They tried to intimidate the apostles by warning them not to speak or teach in the name of Jesus.
The third scenario was in Acts 5:26-29 : As to the accusation of disobedience to authority, Peter put the charge in context. Jesus had said, “You shall be witnesses to Me” ( Acts1:8). The council said, “You shall not be His witnesses” (see v. 28). All authority comes from God. When any authority commands what God has forbidden, or forbids what God has commanded, a Christian must obey the Author of all authority, God Himself. We submit to governmental authority because the One who instituted the authority is God Himself. When we submit to government, we are submitting to God.
QUESTIONS FOR DISCUSSION
1) Despite intimidation, threat to life and apparent danger to the apostles lives, what do you think gave them the boldness that we see displayed in the following texts? Acts 4: 8-12, 23-31. Share your personal experiences witnessing in simpler circumstances (work environment , social gathering or to a godless authority) .
2) Discuss practical and creative ways we can boldly witness to the lost more efficiently and effectively in our polarized world today.