Leadership           Acts 1: 15 – 28

Leadership is a funny thing, in many ways some people clamber after it, others try to avoid it at all cost. then there are those whom it is thrust upon. People might just be exceptional at their craft and others follow. Some see this as an advantage to be used for marketing and others as an opportunity to influence others for good. I was deeply impressed at the last WSL awards night as Gabriel Medina announced his personal donation of another 1 million dollars to The Gabriel Medina Institute. It is a non-profit charity organization that aims to give local kids opportunities in surfing, and in life, that they would not otherwise have. Whilst others have created companies Its this young man leaving a legacy. He would not call himself a leader but leading by example he definitely is.

Leadership is needed Jesus modeled it… Luke 6:12In these days he went out to the mountain to pray, and all night he continued in prayer to God.13 And when day came, he called his disciples and chose from them twelve, whom he named apostles: 

Also Matt 12:1, Mark 6:7, Luke 6:13, luke 9:1

Peter addresses the 120 in the upper room and says…“Let another take his office.

Acts 1: 21 So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 22 beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us—one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection. 23 And they put forward two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also called Justus, and Matthias. 24 And they prayed and said, You, Lord, who know the hearts of all, show which one of these two you have chosen 25 to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place.

There are 3 key points re Leadership / spiritual leaders and appointing them.

They place requirements:  this person must have been involved with them and Jesus’ ministry from the beginning Vs 21-22. They must know and understand the teaching, the methods, and the ministry of Jesus. From the beginning so not a recent addition. They must be conversant in Jesus.

They must have been a witness to the resurrection. They must know the truth of the deity of Jesus first hand. Especially for this calling as apostle to be a witness to Jesus. vs 22

God has already chosen them vs 24 so they must be called.

We see this list of requirements becomes more fully developed in Acts 6:5 when they appoint ‘Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, and Philip, and Prochorus, and Nicanor, and Timon, and Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch’.

Adding the requirement of being full of the Holy Spirit. This list comes to fruition in 1 Timothy 3:1-13 & Titus 1:5-9

So leadership/pastorship / being an overseer or under-shepherd is part of God’s plan for the church. There are requirements to this role, not just academic qualifications or seniority.

They wait and pray till Pentecost. Pentecost means 50th. The 50th day after Passover. It is another significant festival in the Jewish calendar and like the Passover Jews above the age of 18 from all across the world would come to Jerusalem to celebrate the feast of weeks or harvest on the day of Pentecost. see (Ex 3:22-23 Lev 23:16). So just like Passover nearly 2 million Jews were crowded into Jerusalem to celebrate, it’s a significant gathering.

At Pentecost, the first fruits of the harvest were presented to God as an offering of thanks. (Lev23:15-20). The Jews were required to offer the first of the harvest the best of the fruits lambs and cattle without blemish.

Ques: Do we offer God the first fruits of our life the best years the best of our time money and effort? or do we just give him the leftovers, the remains of our day, the change from our pocket, and the scraps of our effort?

The Holy Spirit comes on this day as the first fruits of the believer’s inheritance. the Holy Spirit has been with and at times has filled the disciples and others. But now the spirit indwells believers.

The spirit is our guarantee or seal of salvation (2 Cor 5:5; Eph 1:14-15)

Without the spirit leading us into truth, it is impossible to believe… Jn 15:26; Jn 16:13

Luke refers to people in his Gospel as being full of the Spirit Lk 4:1 Jesus, Lk 2: 25 Simeon, Elizabeth & Zechariah Lk 1:41 & 67 & John 1:15.

The account of Pentecost records a remarkable change from the old covenant to the new covenant the spirit not only fills but it dwells within believers. We and they become the temple of the Holy Spirit. 1 Cor 3:16; 1 Cor 6:19.

The Spirit Dwells within believers. (Jn 14:17; Rom 8:9; 8:11 & 2 Tim 1:14)

The Spirit comes in a new way on this day as these 120 believers are the first fruits of God’s global harvest of believers from all nations.

The Spirit changes people – R. C. Sproul

Without the Spirit of God, we can do nothing. We are as ships without wind or chariots without steeds. Like branches without sap, we are withered. Like coals without fire, we are useless. As an offering without the sacrificial flame, we are unaccepted. – Charles Spurgeon

Many Christians estimate difficulty in the light of their own resources, and thus they attempt very little and they always fail. All giants have been weak men who did great things for God because they reckoned on His power and presence to be with them.  – Hudson Taylor

Since the days of Pentecost, has the whole church ever put aside every other work and waited upon Him for ten days, that the Spirit’s power might be manifested? We give too much attention to method and machinery and resources, and too little to the source of power. – Hudson Taylor

The Spirit changes people - R. C. Sproul