They devoted themselves to the apostle’s teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:42
I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own, he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you. John 16:12-15
About three thousand people had joined the disciples on the day that Peter preached to the crowd. They came through repentance and baptism, and had received the gift of the Holy Spirit. However, they knew little or nothing of Jesus: of his life, death, resurrection, ascension into heaven. Nothing of what he taught and did. There was a lot to learn.
None of what we take for granted that tells us about Jesus had been written yet. The apostles taught by speaking. The stories of Jesus were so new and exciting to those first listeners that they devoted themselves daily to the apostles’ teaching. They also learned from fellowship with the other disciples, from sharing the sacrament of bread and wine and by being together in prayer.
The apostles, too, were learning more of what Jesus had to say to them that they had not been ready to bear before. The Holy Spirit was preparing the hearts, minds and memories for all those followers of Jesus to carry his message and live in his way throughout the world as they were scattered because of rising persecution.
Question: Has our easy access to information about God, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit dulled our sense of delight in hearing about and hearing from God? Do we need to ask the Holy Spirit to show us something in God’s word that we haven’t been ready, or perhaps have chosen not to see? May we begin again and ask that our eyes and ears be opened to receive God’s truth and love from his word.
I grew up singing an old hymn that still delights me. It was written in 1880 by a blind gospel hymn writer, Fanny Crosby. “Tell Me the Story of Jesus”. The lyrics are available online as are performances by various artists on Youtube.
By Carolyn Schmitt