Acts

by David Cook
Overview

The book of Acts is one of the most exciting parts of the whole Bible. Jesus has just ascended to heaven, the Spirit has come to the church, and we see God at work. Luke’s purpose in writing Acts is to show the triumphant progress of the gospel, starting from Jerusalem, through Judea, into Samaria, throughout Asia Minor, into Europe, and finally to Rome. However this is not triumphalism, for the gospel messenger will be opposed, tortured, imprisoned, and martyred. There will be opposition from outside religious and commercial interests and even dissension within the church, yet the gospel will progress and people will come to Christ. Embark on a journey through the book of Acts, and see how the Holy Spirit empowers the church to witness in ever widening circles, until the gospel reaches the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8).

The Structure of Acts

1–7
The gospel in Jerusalem and Judea; Peter the primary apostle; Jews the primary target.

8–12
Into Samaria; Peter still active; Paul converted; the Gentile Cornelius converted.

13–28
The missionary journeys; the gospel reaches Rome; Paul the primary apostle; Jews still contacted first, but Gentiles now the primary target.

Key Verse
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” —Acts 1:8

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