The Book of Acts gives us an up-close look at the life of Christians after Jesus’ resurrection, the spread of the Gospel, and how the early church developed. As you read through the Book of Acts, those who followed Jesus had one thing that impacted everything around them. What’s remarkable is that one thing is available to us today and still has the potential to impact everything around us.
But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”Acts 1:8
Brief Overview of Acts
The Book of Acts is the sequel to the Gospel of Luke. Acts is Luke’s written account of the history of the Christian movement, the spread of the Gospel, and the birth of the church. The Gospel of Luke gives an account of Jesus’ life and ministry. The Book of Acts continues where the Gospel of Luke left off with Jesus’ commissioning of the disciples and then follows the spread of the Gospel locally, regionally, and globally. The Book of Acts covers 30–40 years and shows how Christians and the church were outward-focused. The Book of Acts gives us a glimpse into how Christ-followers, even under Roman rule, were good citizens, reasonable, peaceful, and charitable. Throughout the 28 chapters, the Book of Acts tells the story of how God first invited the Jewish people, and then people of all nations, to follow Jesus.
Small Group Discussion
Read Matthew 6:10.
- In what ways do we tend to promote “our” kingdom and “our” will?
- Discuss the connection between these two passages of Scripture.
In Acts 1:8, Jesus says, “You will be my witnesses.” What are practical ways we can be witnesses for Jesus?
- In what ways do we overcomplicate being a witness for Jesus?
Read 2 Corinthians 5:15.
- Discuss today’s big idea of “we make our lives count when we make Jesus’ name known… and we make Jesus’ name known through our lives.”
In Acts 1:8, Jesus says, “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” In Acts 5:28, the high priests say to the disciples, “You have filled Jerusalem with your teaching.” In Acts 17:6, the believers are described as “These men who have turned the world upside down.” We see a clear example of believers taking Jesus’ name out into their spheres of influence.
- In what ways do we become too comfortable keeping our faith inside of church walls?
- What fears or obstacles keep us from making Jesus’ name known? How can your group help?
- In what ways can YOU begin to take the name of Jesus into your spheres of influence?