After Easter–Now What? (Part 6)

James Hassell   -  

This is our concluding article in the “After Easter” series. In this series, we have examined the Christian’s responsibility both to God and to each other in light of the resurrection. Here is a summary of the main points we’ve discussed.

  • Our responsibility is much more than what we “should” do. Paying attention only to the shoulds of life leads to legalism and ritualism.
  • Our responsibility is not a nebulous, subjective form of spirituality without a right or wrong. It is not something left up to our speculative whims.
  • Responsibility is personal, involving our relationship to God and others. Responsibility is an act of faith in Jesus Christ. We participate in God’s redemptive work around us, not because we have to, or because we feel like it, but because we respond in faith to the resurrection power of the Lord in daily life around us.
  • Jesus made clear how we can specifically act in greatly responsible ways in Matthew 28:19-20 and Acts 1:8.

Since we have already considered the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20, let’s spend a few moments analyzing Acts 1:8. In this passage, Christ gave some final detailed instructions before ascending to heaven. In fact, let’s consider three great lessons from the passage that deal applicably with our personal response to the resurrected Christ.

Lesson One: Christ promised to empower us with the Holy Spirit. Jesus said, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you.” The term we translate as “power” is the Greek word dunamis, from which we get English words such as “dynamite” and “dynamic.” Dunamis is a dynamic, explosive power that illustrates the range of possibilities in the Spirit’s arsenal on evil. In other words, as the Spirit indwells the believer, the Spirit makes it possible for us accomplish our responsibilities before God. We are not alone! The Holy Spirit is the dynamite within the believer that can accomplish the Great Commission. Being responsible is not something that is just left up to us to figure out. The transformative power of the Holy Spirit guides and equips us.

Lesson Two: Our responsibility to the resurrected Christ clearly involves witnessing. In the New Testament language, to witness means that we share truthful information with others about the gospel’s impact in our life. In fact, one of the simplest ways to witness involves three components: Share how you life was before Christ; share how you came to faith in Christ; and share how life has been different since you have come to faith in Christ.

Lesson Three: Our responsibility to witness about Christ is not confined to one specific area or people group. Jesus commanded us to go into Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and the ends of the earth. This language means that we ought to go both near and far with the gospel message. Jesus intends for his loving gospel to be heard by all people everywhere, regardless of race or nationality. His Kingdom can easily exceed manmade borders and cultures.

And thus we come to the conclusion of our series. It’s now time to put what we’ve discussed into action! Let’s go out to our neighbors and respond to the work of the resurrected and empowering Christ around us.