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"On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: "Do not leave Jerusalem but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about."' NIV translation
One thing that jumps out at me in the first part of this verse is the fact that it says "while he was eating with them". We probably just blow on by this when we read this verse but have you ever asked yourself why Jesus would have been eating with them? As we looked at yesterday, this happened after Jesus was resurrected so I don't think Jesus ate to fulfill his own needs. It seems to me that Jesus probably dined with the apostles to help them to be more comfortable. Isn't it awesome to see that no matter what Jesus was always putting others first?
The command that he gave the apostles is just as significant for us today as it was to them at the time. He told them to wait for the Holy Spirit before they left to do the work that he was going to give them. How often do you and I want to go ahead without the guidance from the Holy Spirit? It is very tempting to try to do so and to try to make our plans fit into God's plan but that can lead to frustration.
"For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit." NIV translation
We all know of people that have been "baptized" but it seems like there is no change in their life. To me, that is a lot like John baptizing with water. Repentance is easy for a Christian but the power to overcome the sin only comes through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Here, Jesus is reminding us that the gift of the Holy Spirit is what gives us the ability to do what God wants us to do.
Once again, Jesus is telling them to wait and not try to do things on their own. How much time do you spend praying and waiting on the guidance from God? It must be very important because Jesus has mentioned it twice in only five verses and there is more to come. Today, let us all start the day by asking God to show us (through the Holy Spirit) what He wants us to do.
"So when they met together, they asked him, "Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?''' NIV translation
We see in this verse that the apostles still did not understand about the Kingdom of God. They always kept looking for God to overthrow the Roman government and restore the Israelite kingdom to it's former glory. They still did not see the big picture and the fact that Jesus was giving them more than a temporary earthly kingdom.
We may ask ourselves why they didn't get it and criticize them but do we make the same mistake in our own daily lives? I must confess that many times I let the earthly things distract me from God's big plan. I must also confess that I am most easily distracted from God's plan when I haven't spent time reading God's word and praying.