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. – Acts 1:8
Scripture reading: Acts 1:1-11
The book of Acts describes the mission that the church has been given between the first and second coming of Christ: to be His witnesses as the gospel spreads to cover the whole world. Whatever we are, whoever we are, whatever work God has given us, that is who He has called us to be: His witnesses to Jesus Christ.
Acts 1:8 describes this as an ongoing process that lasts until Jesus returns, spreading to cover the world: “in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Indeed, the Heidelberg Catechism speaks of this expansion as part of what we believe about the church in Q&A 54:
What do you believe concerning “the holy catholic church”?
I believe that the Son of God through his Spirit and Word, out of the entire human race, from the beginning of the world to its end, gathers, protects, and preserves for himself a community chosen for eternal life and united in true faith. And of this community I am and always will be a living member.
That whole answer is about mission and it is very clear that the mission continues until Jesus returns: “Out of the entire human race, from the beginning of the world to its end.” That is who we are and that is why we are here as the church. That is our mission.
Suggestions for prayer
That God would give us the eyes of faith to see the expansion of His kingdom around the world and that He would make us faithful witnesses to Jesus Christ in all of our living.
This daily devotional is available in a print edition you can buy at Nearer to God Devotional. Nick Smith is pastor of the United Reformed Church of Nampa, Idaho.