And so the word of God continued to spread. The number of disciples in Jerusalem grew larger and larger, and a great number of priests accepted the faith. Acts 6:7
How remarkable that “a great number of priests accepted the faith.” This passage from Acts is referring to the weeks after Jesus’ resurrection. Maybe some who joined the group of believers had nothing to lose. After a life of begging, those grateful for healing may have had no other place in society. Poor believers were supported by the group, who shared resources in common. Physical, emotional, and spiritual support are attractive rewards for former outcasts. But priests? They had nothing to gain by joining this faction. In fact, they had a lot to lose—status in the community, expulsion from the Temple, contempt from their former associates. But they joined anyway.
What opened their eyes to the truth? Surely the demonstration of the believers themselves played a strong part. Peter and John, with nothing on their resumes except fishing, were now the leaders of those who followed Jesus. Threats from the most powerful Temple authorities couldn’t stop them. People were being healed. The Holy Spirit promised by Jesus enabled His followers to speak boldly and live even more boldly. Not just their words, but their courage and the radical integrity of their way of life bore witness.
What about us? What have we seen or heard that makes us want to walk more closely with Christ? How might our actions and choices bear witness to others of the value of Christ’s truth?
Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for empowering those who follow you to attract others. May our words and actions do the same.
Reflection for sharing: What have you seen that brought you closer to God’s truth? How can you share that truth with others?