Peter and the other apostles now knew precisely what their purpose in life was.
As they told the not-so-friendly Sanhedrin, Jesus is their “Prince and Savior.” He had called them to repentance and given them forgiveness for all their sins. They had been privileged to see Jesus crucified and then resurrected.
There was only one thing that would ever suffice as their life’s pursuit from this moment on. They might still go fishing occasionally. But that was no longer their calling in life. No more tax collecting. No more trying to zealously eject Rome from their homeland. There would be no more of anything that couldn’t be worked around so that they could do the main thing.
And that main thing was crystal clear to them. They were left behind to witness to the good news of Jesus Christ. Teaching his love, forgiveness, grace and mercy, and instructing people in his truth — this was their life’s purpose and mission from now on.
“Peter and the other apostles replied: ‘We must obey God rather than human beings! The God of our ancestors raised Jesus from the dead—whom you killed by hanging him on a cross. God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might bring Israel to repentance and forgive their sins. We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him…'” (Acts 5:29-32, NIV).
And this clarity of purpose is exactly what made the apostles resilient, relentless, and unstoppable.
“…They (the Sanhedrin) called the apostles in and had them flogged. Then they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name. Day after day, in the temple courts and from house to house, they never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah” (Acts 5:40b-42, NIV).
Our Bible reading for Tuesday, June 9, is 2 Samuel 14:1 – 15:12, Acts 5:12-42 and Proverbs 14:15-24.
Lord God, Heavenly Father, help me to be as crystal clear about my purpose in this life as the apostles were. You have sent me your Son to be my Prince and my Savior. Jesus won forgiveness and eternal life for me and all people. You have given the Holy Spirit to us in the word and sacraments — there is great comfort in this! We are witnesses of these things. Help me to be unstoppable in sharing your love and your grace.