The Revealing of the Plan - Day 13

Why are we doing this? How many times have you asked or heard that question? It is a common question that athletes in training will ask when it seems as if they are doing everything but playing the sport that they signed up for. It is a question many ask after having been weeks on a new job without seeming to even begin to do what they were hired for in the first place. Many students have asked this question after days of study that doesn't seem to be remotely related to the subject they had signed up for.


But in all such situations, the truth is eventually revealed if the one in charge is doing their job. The day finally comes when the coach relates the practice to the game, or when the boss shows how the training will be now used for the job you were hired to do, or when the teacher shows the connection between the homework and the subject the student wanted to learn more about. In other words, there always comes a day when the things that went before are revealed as all being a part of the plan.


In many ways, this is what the Book of Acts is for: First, to reveal why Jesus went through what He did and second, to reveal what is now required of us. On the day of Pentecost, fifty-one days after Christ's crucifixion, God begins to reveal His plan through the preaching of Peter the apostle:


"Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs which God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know--this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. But God raised him up, having loosed the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it."

Acts 2:22-24, RSV  


In this short statement, God has Peter reveal that the Good News of Jesus' life, death, and resurrection were all part of His definite plan. God inspires the apostle Paul to refer to this definite plan as His "eternal purpose" (Ephesians 3:11). And it is God's eternal purpose - a definite and precise, pre-determined plan - that explains to us why Jesus went through what He did. Now, in Acts chapter 2, God has Peter begin to reveal our part in the plan. From the hearing of the Gospel plan of salvation in Acts 14-42, to the requirement of "calling on His name" (confession of belief) in verse 21, to those who received his word (in other words, they believed) in verse 41, to repentance in verse 38, and then to baptism for the forgiveness of sins in verses 38 and 41.


It is interesting to note our initial part in God's plan of salvation is fully revealed in this 2nd chapter of Acts. But there is yet more to be explained in this chapter. In verse 41 it is revealed that 3,000 souls were added to the number of saved, and verse 47 reveals that it is God Himself who does this "adding". Several versions, including the King James and New King James versions, refer to this "number" as the church in verse 47. Please do not miss that point: It is God, not men, who adds us to the church!


That's a lot of "Why are we doing this?" questions asked in a very short span of reading. This should make us all the more eager to keep on reading in order to find out what further things that God will reveal about His eternal purpose as well as our part in that plan. Today's reading is Acts 1-8, and you will be blessed with many more answers to questions you may have always wondered about, if you will read this inspired book with the attention all of God's Word requires.