Pentecost and the quest for courage

 The desire for boldness was the joint desire of all the believers in the first Church.

The believers and their leaders in the first Church in Jerusalem were intimidated and instructed to stop preaching and ministering in the Name of Jesus Christ by the temple authorities. They knew that they needed boldness, confidence and courage and they went to Jesus Christ, in prayer, to receive it.

The desire for boldness was the joint desire of all the believers in the first Church.


And so they prayed:  "Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus." (Acts 4:29-30)


How do we face intimidation and fear? Jesus provides through the Holy Spirit, the power by which we live and serve. The Spirit of Christ provides the power to pursue courage and become confident. He is our power by which we face threats and pressure victoriously.


The first Church needed courage, so they prayed.

Firstly, they asked God to note the threats. They believed that to resolve the threatening situation, was God’s work to do. And so they laid that problem at his feet. They believed God would do something about it.

Secondly, they prayed that they would be given confidence to speak God’s word. That should still be the desire of the Church today.

And thirdly, they prayed that God would act in a divine, miraculous way through them, to touch and change the lives of people.


You better be careful when you pray this kind of prayer, because this is the kind of prayer God answers. He certainly answered the first Church. The Bible says, after they prayed they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. (Acts 4:31)


They faced intimidation, they turned to the Lord, and their intimidation turned into boldness. It happened then, and it still happens today.


The Christian life is both impossible and easy at the same time.

It is impossible to live for Christ in our own power, but easy to live in the power of the Lord. It is both hard beyond our comprehension - and simple, because all we have to do is surrender to Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour - and let him figure it out for us.


Pentecost teaches that our Lord will provide within our pursuit for courage through the work of the Holy Spirit in us – the Spirit that was given to the people of God on that first Pentecost Sunday, so long ago.