“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”” (Acts 1:8, ESV)
Can you picture it? Jesus ascending up in the clouds. The disciples gazing up into heaven. And Jesus says these words as his last words to them before he went out of sight.
If you’re a Christian growing up in church, you probably heard a message on the “Great Commission”. Where the great commission (Matthew 28:18-20) reveals our purpose, Acts 1:8 shows the power to get it done. Only Acts 1:8 Christians have the power to fulfill the great commission of the Lord.
Notice that the scope of Acts 1:8 is worldwide. Jesus used the word “and” instead of “then.” Jerusalem, and Judea, and Samaria, and to the end of the earth. Paul took this command seriously and witnessed through all the known world at that time. Acts 1:8 Christians change the world.
Hear are 4 characteristics of World-changers.
World-changers are empowered by the Spirit. All the spiritual power you need to do spiritual work comes from the Holy Spirit of God. The Holy Spirit’s work is to testify and bear witness of Jesus. “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me.” (John 15:26, ESV) It only makes since then that when the Spirit comes upon you that you will be a witness for Jesus as well. Since the time of Christ, the church has been defining what it means to be Spirit filled and Spirit led. But one thing is for sure. The leading of the Holy Spirit will cause you to witness.
World-changers work in community with others. When you look at this verse in the Greek language, it is very clear that the “you” is plural. Jesus never intended for a disciple to accomplish this daunting task. The Spirit brings disciples together to do amazing things. We call this gathering “The Local Church.” Jesus empowers and guides the local assembly to promote the gospel in her local context and send out witness’ around the world. (Acts 13)
World-changers have a worldwide focus. Jesus has called you into something bigger than yourself. Although salvation is a personal decision, it leads to a greater mission. You are not only empowered to better your life, but to change the world. The power of the Spirit is only realized in worldwide focus.
World-changers are always on mission. As a Christian, you are to be on mission all the time. When you wake up, no matter where you wake up, you should be a witness for Christ. The Spirit leads people to do different things in different places. No one can be everywhere. This is what Jesus meant when he told the disciples they would be able to do more after he left. The Spirit has placed you where you are to be a witness for Christ. If you fail to be on mission, you let down the body. If the whole body is on mission, we have a worldwide witness of the gospel.