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And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.

July 17, 2013

“And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.” Acts 4:13b ESV
Those who had vilified the Christ and conspired with the Roman authorities to murder Him, when confronted with the behavior of these fishermen, were astounded! Where did such self-assurance and manner of speech come from in such ignorant and uneducated people? The only common factor, the only explanation was that “…they had been with Jesus.”
For 3 ½ years these men had walked with Jesus then watched as their leader and hope was crucified and buried. That is where the religious leaders thought it would end, but then came the first day of the week and the report of an empty tomb. News of strange events came to them and seemingly overnight those who had been hiding in some house somewhere were out in the public eye, even in the temple, declaring that this Jesus wasn’t dead anymore!
What can you do to disprove such nonsense when you can’t find the body? Once again they conspired with the Romans to plant a story about how the followers of Jesus had stolen away the body of their leader and assumed that would put a stop to the furor. Now this! What can you do to explain away this healing of a beggar whom everyone entering the temple would have known about? How is a man unable to walk since birth suddenly able to leap and prance around in the temple? How do you explain that, especially when these two fishermen make claims that faith in this dead Jesus (who purportedly isn’t anymore) made this man whole?
The world is still stymied at what to do with the Gospel and the impact Jesus still has on lives today. Through the ages the person of Jesus has radiated hope to countless number of those bereft of any other source; from dungeons to palaces, Jesus still touches hearts and transforms them from hopeless cripples to exuberant worshippers. Still, the world seeks an explanation for these transformed lives and, finding none, decries such as a passing fad that will fade in time. “Charlatans fooling hapless rubes,” is among the mockery of the Gospel and I have to wonder who they are trying to convince.
A question I ask myself often though is, can those I meet today recognize that I have been with Jesus?

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