Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Acts 1-2: Groundhog Day?

As I read the first two chapters of Acts, I notice a few things that lead me to believe that many of the issues we face today are not a whole lot different than what the early believers faced.

To be sure, there were differences (after all, we're not in danger of being used as torches in Nero's garden) but the basic human condition seems to have been the same: "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation" Peter tells his audience in Chapter 2.

I hear a lot about how society is going downhill - about how much worse things are now than they were just a few years back. But it looks like even the YzeroK generation was confronted with the realization of an apparent downward societal spiral.

The hope Peter offers for the problems of turn-of-the-first-millennia civilization is the same hope we cling to today:

"Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit."

And then, this clarification, which I love:

"The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off- for all whom the Lord our God will call."

By "far off," I get the sense that Peter was speaking geographically, so I really take a lot of hope from this. This wasn't some Middle-Eastern cultural promise. This was a promise that extended to lands that Peter probably didn't even know existed.

Earlier in the chapter, Peter explains what is going on by referring to the writings of the prophet Joel. The passage describes one of the things God says He will do in the "last days." So Peter was telling the early church that they were living in the last days.

Which leads me to believe we are also living in those same last days... kind of like a biblical version of the movie Groundhog Day. But I love the assurance offered by the realization that the reality of hardship is the same to us as it was 2000 years ago.

And so is the surety of our hope.

1 comment:

mom said...

Ever think of a career as a preacher, or teacher! I enjoyed that "sermonette" very much! I even had coffe while viewing, so sort of got the feel of "Carribou", or "Stonewolf"!

Miss you!