You will receive power ...

So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” He said to them, “It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight.

Is there a more natural question for a resurrected Messiah than “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” It makes sense if the focus of your life, and the preoccupation of your mind, is a natural and physical freedom. If I lived back then I would have also been fixated on overthrowing Roman rule. Yet the Lord Jesus is a different kind of Messiah with a different sort of message. He responds saying that their concern should be heavenly and not earthly.

What do you think his disciples imagined when they heard that they would receive power? Perhaps they imagined some sort of blessing that would help them get rid of Rome? I imagine that they had no clue concerning the events of the Day of Pentecost. How could they ever understand something that had never happened before? Pentecost changed everything. Cowards became brave. The weak became strong. The Holy Spirit made witnesses out of weaklings.

I need your power Lord. Baptize me anew with the Holy Spirit.

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