The Book of Acts Bible Study Chapter 1 Part 1

Welcome to the book of Acts! Many call this book “the Acts of the Apostles”, but for this study it would be great to get our focus off the Apostles and instead view Acts through the lens of “the Acts of the Holy Spirit”. This is a book that is going to teach us about who He is and what He does. All commentary is based on the NKJV.

We begin this study by reading Acts 1:1-12

v1: Former account – The author of the book of Acts (presumed to be Luke) also wrote the gospel of Luke. Both are addressed to the same person – Theophilus -which means “One who loves G-d”(see Luke 1:1-4)

· The focus of the book of Luke was about what Yeshua did and what He taught – truth that transforms our lives.

v2: Until the day He was take up: Luke 24:50-53. The emphasis of this verse is not on the fact that it was the day that Yeshua was leaving, but the emphasis was that on that day, by means of the Holy Spirit, He (Yeshua) commanded His Apostles.

Note: Throughout the book of Acts there is a clear emphasis upon the Holy Spirit, who is associated with redemption (Isaiah 59:20-21) and with bringing divine order into our lives. Redemption is a purchase, but it can also be understood as a reclaiming.

v3: ‘Presented Himself alive’ meant that Yeshua had conquered death. The payment for sin is death, so if He conquered death then it also implies that He conquered sin. That is what we are called to do -live in victory over sin.

· Speaking of the things pertaining to the Kingdom of G-d: Yeshua did not speak only ABOUT the Kingdom, but He spoke about the THINGS of the Kingdom. These ‘things’ are at the heart of the book of Acts. The Kingdom of G-d is not just a future reality, but it is available to us right now (Luke 17:20-21)

v4: He commanded them: It is only through obedience to Yeshua’s commands that we are going to live a victorious life over sin.

· Waiting in Jerusalem (Luke 24:49) was also an OT command. Passover had just finished (Yeshua died on Passover and therefore fulfilled it). He also fulfilled the festival of first fruits by rising from the dead on that exact day (Lev 23:9-14, 1 Cor 15:20-23) The festival 50 days after First Fruits is called “Shavuot” or “Pentecost” – both meaning “50”. (After His resurrection Yeshua had been with his disciples for 40 days -see Acts 1:3- and then he was taken up, so they were required to wait another ten days in order to celebrate Shavuot)-see Lev 23:15-21. It was a feast associated with “new”ness, and on that exact day (the day of Shavuot) the Holy Spirit was poured out!!

· “Wait for the Promise”: This is something we should be doing – waiting for the Promises of G-d (Heb 11:39-40)

v5: Baptism is linked to a change in our lives. A change in status. Literal water baptism, although an incredible sign, is inferior to the baptism of the Holy Spirit. He comes to dwell in us to transform and change us into the image of Messiah Yeshua.

· Not many days from now: The disciples would have approached Pentecost with great expectation.

v6: The disciples had an expectation that the Kingdom was going to be restored to Israel. There is a connection, Biblically, between the Kingdom and Israel.

v7: It is not for you to know: Yeshua did not disagree that the Kingdom was going to be restored back to Israel. It is going to happen, but there was no need to know when.

· Times or seasons: Yeshua, as well as Paul (1 Thess 5:1) break the last days into two distinct allotments of time.

· Which the Father has (set): The Father sets the time. He is going to give the command for the Son to restore the Kingdom to Israel.

v8: They weren’t to be concerned about the end at that time -2000yrs ago (however we have been told that when we see the signs we need to begin to watch – Matt 24:32-44) – but they were commissioned to take the gospel, with power, to the ends of the earth. We are given power to testify with both our words and our deeds.

v9: The ascension of Yeshua was proof that all He had spoken and all He had promised was true.

v10: These angels had come to give insight into the ascension (to teach us something very important about Yeshua’ s return)

v11: He was taken up by a cloud and He will return in the clouds (Ex 34:5, 1 Thess 4:16-17) in order to bring about His Kingdom

v12: Yeshua ascended from the Mt of Olives, and He will return there at His second coming (Zech 14:4) – the rapture (‘Blessed Hope’) is different to the 2nd coming. The rapture happens before the 2nd coming, and at the rapture Yeshua only comes as far as the clouds and meets us there (1 Thess 4:16-18)

· On the Sabbath day a person (by Jewish law) could only walk a maximum of 2-3 kms.

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