ACTS - CHAPTER 2: 33-47 THE GENERATION OF CHRIST
ACTS CHAPTERS 2: 33-47
The Generation of Christ
Tuesday Morning Bible Study
February 1, 2022
Pastor Carolyn Sissom
I hear a cry from the people of God, “Holy Spirit give us more of Christ.” The crying out and pressing in is a hunger to go on and apprehend the Glory of God on earth as it is in Heaven. “Let no man think for one moment that our hunger and thirst after God originated in ourself. God put it there. It is the Spirit of God moving in us ever upward and forward to new realms in Himself. He positively refuses to restore to our midst the revivals of yesterday.” We must be content with the good memories, but forever follow the Fire and the Cloud.
1 John 2:8-10: A new commandment I write to you, which thing is true in Him and in you, because the darkness is passing away, and the true light is already shining. He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him.
I am persuaded that we the church are at the close of one age and the dawning of a new age. This new age in Christ is to be in the perfect realm of LOVE. If it is the new day of LOVE, anything less than that is darkness. “He that loves his brother abides in the LIGHT.” Surely none are so blind as to claim that the Church has entered into this heritage of LOVE. ‘He that says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness even until now (Jn. 1:19).
With every setting of the sun and rising of the same, there is a NEW THING accomplished in the earth; and so, it was on the Day of Pentecost. In our study of Acts, we rejoin Peter preaching his first sermon:
Acts 2: 32-37: This Jesus, God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses. Therefore, being exalted to the right hand of God, having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, He poured out this which you now see and hear. For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he says himself. ‘The LORD said to my LORD, “Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.”
David as a prophet spoke prophetically of the day of Christ. All enemies are those powers and principalities which oppose the glory of the Kingdom of God on earth. God’s covenant of blessing to Israel was attained by Christ. It is a realm of total victory and fruitfulness. A land where the LORD removes all sickness from His people. A land where all the enemies of God’s people are completely destroyed. The word “till” or “until” does not minimize the extent of the victory. The process goes on “until they be destroyed.” No enemy will be able to stand before thee. (Deut. 6, 7 and 8). Jesus was able to say, “the prince of this world cometh, and has nothing in me (Jn. 14:30). There was no place for a foothold in His being. Satan had no ground to defeat Jesus.
Acts 2: 38-39: Then Peter said to them, Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the LORD our God will call.
Repent means to change one’s mind and attitude. It is an act of obedience which will in return give us a new mind, new attitude and a new heart. Until there is true repentance, men will maintain their own righteousness in a vain attempt to convince themselves that all is well. They will continue to blame other people for their sin. They will make excuses. “That was really a mistake, not a sin…” “That was just the Irish in me.” “Everyone has some kind of problem.” “After all, I am only human.” Call it what we will, a mistake, or Irish, or human, it is not true repentance; and God cannot be satisfied with anything less than a humble heart of true repentance.
Baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins. Remission means debt cancelled, forgiveness, repealed. It is necessary to be baptized in the Name of Jesus Christ for our sins to be cancelled. We must take Christ’s name to receive the blessings of His Kingdom. His name becomes our name when we say, “I am a Christian.” Everything God offers man is in Christ. The finished work of all God’s promises, covenants and blessings for mankind are in Christ.
GIFT OF THE HOLY SPIRIT: The Holy Spirit Himself is a gift. He is a separate gift from His gifts given by the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the indwelling of the believer with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit and His glorious working within us is the glory of Christ bringing us into the fullness of Christ.
When I read this scripture, as is my custom, I prayed for my children, grandchildren and for everyone in our church family for your children and grandchildren down to the 10th generation. The gospel invitation is for “whosoever will.” Rev. 22:17: The Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that hears say, Come. Let him that is athirst come. Whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
2:40-45: With many other words he (Peter) testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. They continued steadfastly in the apostle’s doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. Now, all who believed were together, and had all things in common. They sold their possessions and goods, and divided them among all, as anyone had need.
PERVERSE GENERATION – that is a strong and harsh judgment. It is interesting because Jesus left no one to declare “his generation.”
Isaiah prophesied of Jesus: He was taken from prison and from judgment; and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living; for the transgression of my people was he stricken.
Acts 8:33: In his humiliation his judgment was taken away and who shall declare his generation? For his life is taken from the earth.
In the book of the generation of Jesus Christ in the gospel of Matthew, there are exactly 41 generations from Abraham to the generations of Christ who is called Jesus, but not 42 as Matthew would seem to indicate (3 x14). However, Matthew did not compute the generations unto Jesus (Mt. 1:1), but “unto Christ” (Mt. 1:17).
The Gospel of Matthew is the history of Jesus’ earthly ministry to the generations on the earth. The Book of Acts is the Christ’s spiritual ministry to a new generation.
Jesus spoke judgment on that generation because of their rejection of His earthly ministry: Mat. 12:42: The queen of the south (Sheba) shall rise up in the judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it; for she came from the uttermost parts of the earth to hear the wisdom of Solomon; and, behold a greater than Solomon is here.
Peter preaches to those who are gathered at Pentecost to be saved from this perverse generation by receiving Christ as their Messiah. That generation was already judged.
Christ includes His Body which would include His generation (There are only 13 generations from the carrying away unto Babylon unto Christ). The 14th generation would be the new generation born into a New Testament Kingdom. Peter called for the people to be saved from the perverse generation which crucified Christ. Christ includes the body of believers who share the same anointing as the anointed one. We are members of his body, of his flesh and of his bones (Eph. 5:30).
We can also point out that the generations of the Israelites from the time they left Egypt to the plains of Moab were 41 encampments. The Joshua generation was the 42nd encampment as they moved forward to the Jordan.
Those saved from the perverse generation are the beginning of building Christ’s church (a new generation). Peter sees the impenitence of the Jewish nation and begs all who will listen to escape the fate of that unbelieving generation. About 3000 joyously respond to Peter’s words giving evidence of their repentance by baptism.
The 120 disciples had a full day baptizing converts. The Holy Spirit continued to teach the apostles and the people in what is here described as the apostle’s doctrine. Their teaching became the Holy Scriptures of the New Testament and the New Covenant.
The signs and wonders brought fear to the people. 2 Co. 12:12: Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs and wonders, and mighty deeds. Miracles will produce faith and fear of God as a testimony of the presence of God. However, miracles often do not produce a sanctified life. “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine? (Luke 17:17). Of the 5000 who were fed, the same crowd cried, “crucify him.” After all the miracles the twelve apostles saw Jesus perform, at his crucifixion their conviction that He was the Christ failed.
SHARING: Once these Jews were saved, God’s love burned in their hearts as the Holy Spirit continued to manifest Himself. It was an amazing demonstration of what the Spirit of Christ could do for mankind. By reputation, Jews are very frugal. The presence of the LORD will release a spirit of generosity and giving into the hardest heart. There is nothing much worse than a stingy Christian who is usually a very insecure Christian. Certainly con-men and con-women who fleece the sheep are much more grievous. However, in all the above fear of lack is their motive. As long as the fire of spiritual unity burned hotly, the communal plan worked. However, as we know, the practice fell apart because of greed, selfishness, and deception.
Acts 2:46-47: They continued daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart. Praising God, and having favor with all the people. The LORD added to the church daily such as should be saved.
In the weeks that followed Pentecost, the believers met regularly in the temple. Apparently, they used Solomon’s portico which ran along the East side of the outer court. Here they held public meetings and witnessed to the crowds which gathered. The doctrine and order of the first church was very simple; loving one another and witnessing to the glory of Christ. Until chapter 3, there was no real trouble between the infant church and the temple authorities.
Note, it is the LORD who adds to his church. The church was and is a supernatural organism acquiring its life and power from Christ Himself. The fire of Pentecost continued to burn in the Apostles and burned within the hearts of the infant church. The day of Pentecost is only the beginning and the earnest of Christ’s greater work. It started with the remnant of Israel and now spreads throughout the world. The LORD continues to add to His church and will do so until the last living stone is in place.
I thought to start Chapter 3 today, but I so enjoyed studying these 14 verses of chapter 2, that I camped here last night.
As I considered the generation of Jesus Christ, I remembered a scripture in Ecc. 1:4: One generation passes away, and another generation comes; but the earth abides forever.
I am persuaded there is another generation in the world today that co-exists with the generations of Adam and is the generation of the Last Adam. This generation is in a continual process of development because of the law by which it lives. This law is the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus. As the law of sin and death has just about reached its climax in the old generation of Adam so that today humanity stands on the brink of extinction, so the Law of the Spirit of Life hastens on to its glorious fulness in the generation of Christ.
We continue to watch as the great conflict of the centuries hasten on to its final and glorious conclusion. God by His grace reaches back into the chaos of the past, picks up the tangled strands of seeming failure and mistake, transforms them by His grace and power, then weaves them into a pattern of glory and beauty. All this he does in preparation for the great unveiling, the great manifestation of His sons.
Basically, the generation of Christ is the same as it was in the beginning. We are born again by the same Spirit, washed in the same blood, partakers of the same gifts and the same promises. We cry out for the full and complete expression of the Law of the Spirit of Life in Christ. Are we going to credit Adam with having more power and authority than Christ? Are we going to agree with the Pharisees that the law of sin and death has the power and ability to stretch forth its poisonous tentacles into every area of human-kind?
We of the generation of Christ are born into the family of Christ, thus, as His progeny, we inherit the power of grace from the LORD JESUS, as the unsaved inherits the curse from Adam. The curse of Adam and Eve are broken by Faith, the Holy Spirit and the Blood of Jesus. Those who have not broken the curse grow up unto the horrible climax of a natural (Adam) generation. But we, by the same token grow up unto CHRIST in all things by reason of a spiritual generation and spiritual progeny.
The generation of Christ, though scarcely visible as yet, is even now believing what we cannot see so that the day of our manifestation will be seen of those who cannot now believe.
We are blessed in this church fellowship to not only be a company of warriors, but a company of pioneers. Man is prone to fear the unknown way. We admire the pioneer---their bravery, their initiative, their boldness in stepping forth into the unknown. Pioneers are prepared to travel the unknown way with the LORD OF GLORY.
Yes, “another generation cometh.” They will not know fear, nor will they be intimidated by a government of mandates, tyranny or a religious system of unbelief.
This time we shall not fail! This time the Son of God with the Host of Heaven’s armies goes forth to war, riding upon a white horse, and with a sharp two-edged sword proceeding out of His mouth. The armies of heaven which follow Him likewise are riding upon white horses, with the same two-edged sword as their offensive weapon. We go forth together, conquering the enemy and completely subduing the territory that Christ purchased for us over 2000 years ago, but which we have never really appropriated. It is the realm of the heavenlies, our heritage in Christ Jesus.
1 Pe. 2:9: You are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people, that you should show forth the praises of him who has called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Carolyn Sissom, Pastor
Eastgate Ministries Church
Scripture from NKJV. I entered into the labors of Evening and Morning by George H. Warnock (1917-2017). Comments and conclusions are my own. May Brother Warnock forgive me for application of revelations given to him if I have done so presumptuously.