They had been with Jesus looks like a feat that is easily attainable but looking into this topic deeply you will understand that the gateway into another realm in our Spiritual walk is to be with Jesus. We would look at what being with Jesus can mean in our age and time. It must be said that Christians of the twenty-first century have no excuse about not being with Jesus. If you are interested, let us look into the scriptures together.
Who is Jesus? Jesus came into the world, he said teaching in the synagogue at the age of twelve Mark 6:2, people were astonished at his teaching, asking what type of wisdom is given unto Him, miracles were happening. In order to discredit all of these, they traced his genealogy. Jesus went on, he was tested of the enemy, and he called twelve disciples unto himself. Luke 6: 13-16, he commissioned the disciples to go out and preach. Jesus performed many miracles. He made us know his relationship with his father in Heaven; he made us know in John 10:30 “I and my Father are one”. Jesus went on to die on the cross of Calvary taking away the sin of the world. He is the final propitiation for our sins that is why He is described as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. He rose on the third day (his resurrection is the basis of our faith), when he was leaving the world, the Holy Spirit continued from where he stopped and he is at the right hand of the father interceding for us, Romans 8: 34.
If we have met Jesus, let us now look into been with Jesus in the light of what is described in the Acts of the Apostles Chapter 4. After Jesus had departed from the world, the apostles were empowered in Acts chapter 1. Remember that he had commissioned them in the book of Matthew 28:18-20 to take the gospel unto all nations. They now went with that same passion of preaching to the world, they were zealous about it. They spread and made the gospel permeate everywhere.
They moved from city to city preaching and God backed them up with signs and wonders. All of these that they were doing was against the wish and will of “religious jobbers” of that time. The Sadducees mentioned in the book of Acts 4 are described as the religious people who were badly affected by the signs and miracles happening. It was affecting the loyalty of people to them and as such that wanted to stop the move of Christianity amongst people.
Eventually, they caught Peter and John, they eventually questioned them, trying to know about what they preach. Peter, a man who had earlier denied Jesus in the Mt 26:69-75. He had become bold to tell them of Jesus, even though Jesus had gone, he had been empowered. MOST TIMES AS HUMAN WHEN WE RATE SOMEONE AS STRONG, WE DON’T EMERGE STRONG BUT WHEN THE STRONG PERSON IS NOT AROUND, WE RISE UP TO THE OCCASION. As it is, Jesus had gone, they have been empowered as such he had the ability to defend his faith. WILL YOU DEFEND YOUR FAITH! Regardless of the situation, Peter was bold enough to tell them that the miracle was done in the name of Jesus. WHO DO YOU ASCRIBE YOUR MIRACLE, BREAKTHROUGH AND SUCCESS TO? He made them know that they killed him; he made them understand that the name is the only source of saving men under the Heavens.
EFFECTS OF BEING WITH JESUS:
The Dake’s Annotated Study Bible gave the following description to the boldness of these men.
1. Boldness of speech 2 Cor 7:4
2. Plainness of speech 2 Cor 3:12
3. Freely acts Acts 2:29
4. Open Mark 8:32
5. Boldly Eph 6:19
6. Boldness Eph 3:12
7. Confidence Heb 3:6
They believed these men are not learned in Judaism but they had DIVINE KNOWLEDGE of the Lord Jesus.
They had the AUDACITY TO SPEAK AUTHORITATIVELY because they preached what they know.
They were distinct in the way they spoke;
They were CONSUMED WITH PASSION TO MAKE OTHERS KNOW CHRIST just like the 3 Hebrew men in the book of Daniel 3.
They WERE FILLED WITH WORDS FROM THE HOLY SPIRIT- Isaiah 30:21, “you will hear a word behind you, this is the way, walk in it”. Luke 12:12, “the Holy Spirit will teach you what to say”
They WERE FEARLESS BECAUSE THEY HAD IT IN MIND, Matthew 10:28, “do not fear those who can kill the body but not the soul fear him who can kill the soul and the body in hell”
THEIR FACES SHONE: There are two examples of this in the Bible. When Moses had met God in the book of Exodus 34:29-30, the children of Israel could not look at his face. When Jesus got to pray in the mount too, Matthew 17:2, his face shone as sun and his raiment was white as the light. The implication of this is that you can never be with Jesus and you will have the same countenance to people? You will have moved beyond their level to a higher level, you will be speaking from a higher realm of faith; you will be acting beyond their comprehension.
HOW CAN YOU BE WITH JESUS?
LISTEN TO GOD: Hebrews 1:1-2. “God has spoken to our fathers through the prophets in times past but in these last days, he speaks unto us by His son who he hath appointed heir of all things”. Hebrew 1: 14 now sums it up by saying, “angles are sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation”. Do you listen to God?
IN-DEPTH STUDY: You can be with Jesus by the in-depth study of the word of God, 2 Tim 2:15. In our time, the word of God is on the street, in the media (social media, print, broadcast), books, the internet, everywhere. One cannot compare our days to when it is only the Priest that has access to the scroll, when the Bible was only in Greek or Hebrew language alone etc. We have to know that we can be with Jesus every hour of our lives, there is no excuse!
FELLOWSHIP: The Bible admonished us not to forsake the assembly of ourselves together, as the manner of some is, but exhorting one another… Hebrews 10:25. Encourage each other with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs Ephesians 5:19. The scripture also talks in the books of Proverbs 27:17. You have a lot of benefits to derive in fellowshipping one with another.
GET TRAINED: Don’t jump at doing the Master’s job. Get trained, Jesus trained the disciples, Paul trained Timothy. Who will train you? Who is training you? It is your training that will eventually help you in doctrinal discourse, the ministry that you will be involved in as written in the book of Ephesians 4:11- Apostles, Prophets, Evangelist, Pastors and Teachers, in-depth understanding of the word of God amongst others. However, there are exceptions like Apostle Paul who would get trained divinely.
Would you be with Jesus? Would you rub minds with Jesus? Would you live with Jesus? Would people see the difference in your life before you met Jesus and after you met Jesus? Would you gallant share Jesus with those you meet henceforth? You need to be with Jesus first!
(c)Olutayo IRAN-TIOLA, Lagos, Nigeria