Acts

Acts 4:23-31 The Postmillenial Gospel.

There can be no doubt that the apostolic witness was a postmillennial one. The ascension, wherein the Lord ascended to reign till all His enemies are made His footstool (Ps. 110; I Cor. 15:25), is directly linked here to Psalm 2 and the rebellion but inevitable obedience of the nations. It takes some real scripture twisting and intellectual gymnastics to shift all this to the second coming, or to somehow spiritualize the whole reign of Christ. It is an unbiblical spirituality that is divorced from actual life and history. Worse still is a concept of discipleship that is somehow only a private matter-just what the secular humanistic nations would prefer. However, the nations, the individuals in them, and their rulers rage in vain from the ascension till He comes again, when He will hand His messianic kingdom over to the Father when the last enemy, death, is destroyed (vv. 23-26 Cf. Ps. 2:1-2; I Cor. 15:24-26). The Creator of all is also the Redeemer of His elect (v. 24 Cf. Ex. 20:11).

It was the universal testimony of the believers that Jew and Gentile together with their leaders, were all guilty of crucifying the Lord of Glory, but that this same Lord re-entered that glory to reign till all His enemies are made His footstool (v. 27 Cf. Ps. 24). This was and is all a part of His sovereign plan and purpose (v. 28). It was this understanding of God’s absolute sovereignty that led them to pray for boldness to preach the word. To preach the word was and will always remain His will, and in His sovereign power He is fully able to perform that which He wills (v. 29). This power showed itself by the apostolic authenticating healings, signs, and wonders, “done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus” (v. 30). God also answered their prayer by filling them with the Holy Spirit, “and they spoke the word of God with boldness” (v. 31). God still gives His servants boldness to preach the word for the same postmillennial kingdom purpose.

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