Called as Witnesses (Acts 1:8) - Radical

Called as Witnesses (Acts 1:8)

“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

These are Jesus’s last words in the Book of Acts before He ascends into heaven. Right after this, Verse 9 says, “When He had said these things, as they were looking on, He was lifted up and a cloud took him out of their sight.” His last words, “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses to the ends of the earth.”

The people of God have been called to witness to something far greater than partisan politics. We have been called to share the gospel of Jesus Christ.

You think about that in these Jewish disciples’ minds, being told at this moment that they would start, that they would have supernatural power to witness to the Gospel, to the truth of who He is, to the wonder of what He has done to save sinners. They will witness to that. They will speak about that, starting in Jerusalem, so right where they lived, that which was familiar to them, and going to the ends of the earth. This just blew their minds in so many different ways.

As I think about praying during a presidential election, let’s let these words from Jesus soak into our minds and our hearts in a fresh way right now. Jesus has commissioned you right where you are listening to this right now, assuming you’re a follower of Jesus, Jesus has commissioned you and me and every follower of His, thinking in the United States during election season, He’s commissioned us … to do what? … to be witnesses to this political candidate, talking about this political party? No. Talking about Him, talking about His Word, that’s what we’re commissioned by God to do, to witness to Jesus and His word starting right where we are and spreading out to the ends of the earth, to all nations, all peoples, to the Beja people of Sudan, 2.4 million Muslims, no followers of Jesus. He’s called us to be witnesses to them.

As we are engaged in so many different thoughts and discussions about politics in our country, in our nation in these days, let us not forget we have been commissioned far and above conversations about politics, candidates, parties, election. We have been commissioned by the King of all creation to witness to His glory, right where we live and to the ends of the earth.

God, we pray, help us to be faithful witnesses. God, I pray for this in my life. I pray for this for every single one of your followers listening right now. Help us to proclaim the Gospel. Help us to witness to you during these days to people who are lost without you, who are on a road that leads to an eternal hell. Help us to witness to you during these days far more than we speak about politics or the election.

Lord, help us to point people, not to ultimately this candidate or that candidate, this party or that party, this position or that position, help us to point people to you and to your Word. God, please help us to do that. Even as we participate in this election, God, we pray that our primary purpose day in and day out, when we wake up, all throughout the day, when we go to sleep, God, that we would be thinking, praying about who can we witness to, how can we share the Gospel. God, help us by the power of your spirit in us to be witnesses in the United States, or whatever country we might be in, witnesses right around us and witnesses to the ends of the earth.

God, we pray that you would send some of us to the Beja in Sudan, send laborers to the Beja in Sudan, that they might hear testimony about who you are and what you’ve done for their salvation. God, we pray for witnesses to go to the Beja and 7,000 other people groups that are unreached right now. God, we pray that you would make us more zealous for the spread of the Gospel to all nations than we are even the good of our nation.

And we pray, we’ve been praying, we’ll keep praying, God, for the good of our nation, not that it’s one or the other. God, ultimately we know this is why your spirit is in us, that we might witness to the Gospel in all nations, so help us to be faithful to the commission you’ve given to us, all the more so during these days where we’re talking about political candidates and parties and positions. Lord, help us supremely to witness to people who are desperately in need of what no presidential candidate or party can give. In Jesus’ name, we pray. In the name of the one who has filled us with His spirit to carry out this purpose, in Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

Join us in praying God’s Word as we lead up to the presidential election on November 3rd. Download our prayer guide HERE.

David Platt serves as pastor at McLean Bible Church in Washington, D.C. He is the founder and chairman of Radical. He is the author of several books, including Radical, Radical Together, Follow Me, Counter Culture, and Something Needs to Change.

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