Hurry up…and wait.
JUNE 14, 2021
Hurry up…and wait, Let’s talk about it on Key Life.
Key life exists to communicate that the deepest message of Jesus and the Bible is the radical grace of God to sinners and suffers, because life’s hard for everyone, grace is for all of us. Our host is seminary professor and author, Steve Brown.
Thank you Matthew. I hope you guys had a great weekend and as always, I am hopeful that your pastor’s sermon was as good as my pastor’s sermon. If you were listening last week, we interviewed Luke, sort of, to find out something about him and the book that he wrote, which we’re studying, the book of Acts. And he wasn’t a one book author, either. He wrote also the gospel that bears his name. And, if you were listening last week, we went into that. The who, what, when, where, we introduced Luke, we looked at the people he wrote to, the man he wrote to, who had become a Christian. And we looked at the theme of the book of Acts, in one or two sentences. And now we’re going to go back to that same text and look at something else, as we get into the actual text. Before we do that, let’s pray. Father, when we remember our heritage, when we remember where we’ve been, when we remember the beginning, we’re inspired and we pray to you and ask you that you would do it again, do it in our lives and in our churches and in our nation. Father, make us strong and don’t let us shilly shally. Father, thank you for writing it down. If you had not done that, we wouldn’t get it right. But you did, you gave us your word and it’s profitable for teaching, it’s profitable for our lives, it’s profitable for our witness to the world. Father, you know everybody who’s listening to this broadcast and you know the existential reality of each life, you know where it hurts and you know, where people are afraid and you know when it’s good and when it’s bad and when there’s laughter and when there’s tears. And we praise you because you’re a sovereign God and you’re in charge of every bit of it. You told us in Romans 8:28, that it was all going to be okay. So teach us to trust you in that. And then Father, as always, we pray for the one who does the teaching on his broadcast. They call him Reverend and he’s not. Father, forgive him his sins, there are many, we would see Jesus and him only. And we pray in Jesus name. Amen. Now let me read to you the first 12 verses of the first chapter of Acts, and we’re going to center in on waiting. And then probably when we finish that, go back and pick up a couple of other themes here, but this is what Luke writes in the book of Acts.
In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commandment through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. To them he presented himself alive after his passion, by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking of the kingdom of God. And while staying with them he charged them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; for John baptized with water, but before many days you shall be baptized with the Holy Spirit.
I thought I would go through the 12th verse, but I think I’m going to save that for later and just deal with the verses I just read to you. You know, the first thing that Jesus told his disciples was go out and win the war. No, he didn’t say that. He told him to make an impact for Jesus after all Jesus had done for them. No, he didn’t say that. He told him to set up a great missionary organization and plant churches all over the world. No, he didn’t say that. All those things didn’t come, but that’s not what Jesus said at the beginning. At first he said, wait. That’s hard. I mean, if you had seen a dead man get out of a grave, if you had eaten with him, if you had seen him ascend into heaven, if you had heard his words and knew that every word he spoke was true and God himself. If you had been given the truth of how you could live forever, if you had been told that you were forgiven of everything, no matter where you went, what you did and who you hurt or where you would go or what you would do or who you would hurt. If all of that, I don’t know about you, if all of that had happened to me. I’d be like a horse trying to get out of the barn, man. I’d want to go tell somebody, I’d go first to my family and then I’d go to every friend I had, then I’d start traveling. Who was the guy that used to travel across America, carrying a cross? I wouldn’t do that, but I would carry a Bible and I’d go. I mean, I’d say, let me tell you what I’ve seen, what I’ve done. I’ve been there. You’ve got to listen to, and Jesus says, Shhhhh. Be still, be still, wait. Dear friend, we live in a hustle world and most people would say that if you want to get ahead, if you want to make something out of yourself, if you want to be a mover and a shaker in this world, you’ve got to hustle. Well, I went to an education conference not too long ago. I was impressed with some statistics that were given by the person who was leading that conference, did you know of all the families living in the United States, one third of them were formed in the last 10 years. Did you know that the changes you are living in the town where you are with the children that came from your marriage, that those changes are historic. You knew that, didn’t you? Did you know that in the year 400 BC Aristotle is said to have known and understood everything that man’s knowledge and accumulation of facts in all of history in the world, he knew. And that today you couldn’t even begin to understand a small little bit of that. Every 60 seconds, the equivalent of 200,000 pages of knowledge is added to the encyclopedia of the world. Oh my, and man, you say, I didn’t know all that, I got to get moving. Jesus says, now that you know all of that, sit down. Now that you know all of that, be still. The point I’m making is this, in a technological age such as ours, when the horse and buggy has been replaced by a modern jet. When we talk across the backyard fence, has been replaced by Facebook. When all of our contacts are relatively small, they become hundreds on social media. We’re losing all tranquility and quietness and we’re losing all meaning. In other words, what is happened is that we live in a time of hustle, and most people would say that if you want to get ahead, you want to make something of yourself. If you want to be a mover and a shaker in the world, you got to hustle. Christians buy into that too. If you want to be used by Jesus, don’t sit there, go out and do something for him. Go witness to at least three people every day, study the Bible and memorize the verses. Don’t you get tired? I do. And then I go to Jesus and I say, alright, I’m ready. And he says, sit down. What do you mean? Sit down. The world’s going to hell in a hand basket. What do you mean? Sit down. But that’s exactly what he told his disciples, be still and wait. Now look again at the text, the disciples have just gone through the most exciting period of their lives or anybody else’s lives, most exciting period of history. And Jesus says, be still. That’s how the book of Acts starts. A movement that is going to change the world and turn it upside down, starts with being still. Now, I don’t have time to get into this today. We’re going to start tomorrow. We’re going to look at why Jesus would say that, and it’s really interesting when you look at the text very carefully. But right now, just take what we’ve learned in these few short minutes and stop it. Don’t do anything just, and I’m talking to myself too, because I can hardly wait to get out of this studio. I’ve got 80 things that need to be done today. And Jesus says to me, just stop it. Just sit there. Be still. And I’ll come, we’ll talk. And then we’ll make a plan. He still does it that way. You think about that. Amen.
Thank you Steve. That was Dr. Steve Brown, continuing to teach us from the first chapter of Acts as chronicled by Dr. Luke. Our text covered the first five verses as we explored the idea of waiting. I don’t know about you, but I’m not good at waiting. I have a wait problem. You liked that one, Jeremy, we’re keeping that one in there. I don’t care. If you listen to this program regularly, you’ve probably heard Steve mentioned the new book he’s writing. And of course when it arrives, we will tell you all about it. But for now the latest book that he’s published is, you know, not half bad. It’s called Talk the Walk: How to Be Right Without Being Insufferable. In the book, Steve explains how we as Christians may be right on issues of salvation and theology, but we often miss the less articulated truths of humility, love and forgiveness. As a way of introduction, we’ve created a special booklet featuring excerpts from Talk the Walk, that we would love to send to you for free. Claim your copy right now by calling 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also drop an e-mail to [email protected] and ask for that booklet. By mail, send a request to
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