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Jesus... WOW!

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The story of Jesus… WOW!
Isn't it beautiful the way God has given us the things of His Son Jesus Christ in such a powerful way that a child can know and even understand, yet here we are as those older and still amazed by what Jesus has done.
I think of the hymn #444 “I love to tell the story” Verse 3 captures the essence of the story… Verse 4… with those who know it best. Let us marvel at our Savior this morning...
Luke begins his narrative declaring that his gospel was just the beginning!!! Acts 1:1-2
Acts 1:1–2 NASB95
The first account I composed, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when He was taken up to heaven, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen.
Although the work of Salvation, the payment for sin was finished… the work of Jesus Christ was ongoing!
When you read and think through Acts, you really see that Jesus Christ stirred things up a bit didn’t He!?
For starters consider with me...

The Name of Jesus

Last week we considered God… think about this:
You can bring up a conversation about God and people will remain comfortable
Ask people if they believe or have faith in God and they would most of the time respond in the affirmative
Bring up Jesus and people begin to bristle, they get less comfortable, they now have entered into a more narrow perspective of faith.
As you read through Acts the name of Jesus is not liked even opposed!!! Acts 5:40
Acts 5:40 NASB95
They took his advice; and after calling the apostles in, they flogged them and ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and then released them.
Acts 4:2 shows why this occured to Peter and James the people were disturbed...
Acts 4:2 NASB95
being greatly disturbed because they were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.
When people think of God their concept is One who is distant, powerful but not intimate, far enough for one to be their own god in their life…BUT
You say JESUS… and God is now closer, real, and the very real decision one has to make is WHO will be God???

The Message of Jesus

The message of Jesus allows for only One God, it is very narrow, very clear, and one has to reject self if he is to grasp the message of Jesus Christ… Acts 4:12 and Philippians 2:9-11
Acts 4:12 NASB95
“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”
Paul would restate this …
Philippians 2:9–11 NASB95
For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Jesus Christ is God’s message in the flesh…
Acts repeats over and over the Finished Work of Jesus Christ (His life, death, burial, and resurrection!!!)
Look at Acts 8:12 and Acts 8:35 Acts 16:30-31 and Acts 20:18-21
Acts 8:12 NASB95
But when they believed Philip preaching the good news about the kingdom of God and the name of Jesus Christ, they were being baptized, men and women alike.
Acts 8:35 NASB95
Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him.
Acts 16:30–31 NASB95
and after he brought them out, he said, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” They said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
Acts 20:18–21 NASB95
And when they had come to him, he said to them, You yourselves know, from the first day that I set foot in Asia, how I was with you the whole time, serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and with trials which came upon me through the plots of the Jews; how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, and teaching you publicly and from house to house, solemnly testifying to both Jews and Greeks of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ.
There was power in the early church because they preached Jesus!

The Power of Jesus!

Jesus has power over the enemy / over demons Acts 16:18 (spirit cast out of woman)
Acts 16:18 NASB95
She continued doing this for many days. But Paul was greatly annoyed, and turned and said to the spirit, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her!” And it came out at that very moment.
There is power to heal Acts 3:6; 4:7-10 (lame beggar healed)
Acts 3:6 NASB95
But Peter said, “I do not possess silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you: In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene—walk!”
Acts 4:7–10 NASB95
When they had placed them in the center, they began to inquire, “By what power, or in what name, have you done this?” Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers and elders of the people, if we are on trial today for a benefit done to a sick man, as to how this man has been made well, let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by this name this man stands here before you in good health.
The power for salvation… I’ll read it again Acts 4:12
Acts 4:12 NASB95
“And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.”
Consider this salvation, consider the cost Acts 20:28
Acts 20:28 NASB95
“Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
Be on guard, His flock, His Bride, His Body is precious to Him...

The Body of Christ

Paul known as Saul was going around persecuting the church, these people following this Jesus. On the road Jesus meets Saul and says this… Acts 9:4-5
Acts 9:4–5 NASB95
and he fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” And He said, “I am Jesus whom you are persecuting,
CHURCH!!! You and I are the embodiment of Christ, we are His representation to the world…
We have this WOW message of Jesus Christ…
Let me close with the spot on charge given in the children’s book we read at the start...
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