“One of these men must become with us a witness to His resurrection.” (Acts 1:22)
Must! The apostles used their words carefully. When Judas Iscariot proved unfaithful, the remaining 11 apostles knew that they must replace him, not for the sake of numerical consistency or the beauty of balance, but for the central task of their calling: witnessing to the resurrection of Jesus.
That witness is why God had called the apostles: He wanted the 12 men to go forth and testify (first to Israel, then to the world) that Jesus is not dead, but alive. It is also why we call the Church “apostolic”: the Church’s faith hangs on their witness, and the Church exists to preach and teach that witness still today.
This week concludes the Church’s annual celebration of Easter, but the witness to Jesus’ resurrection continues. The Church must (must!) bear that witness to be the Church. Without it, there is no reason to be the Church, but with it, there is reason for everything good, and for hope in the midst of the bad.
LET US PRAY: O God, thank you for the holy apostles. Grant that their witness to Your Son’s resurrection would still convert hearts today. Let Your Word spread and spread, and Your Church grow and grow; in Jesus’ name. Amen
Pastor Steven K. Gjerde