The sun rose and set as always. Physically the world looked the same. But things were eerily different. A popular man who did nothing but good was executed about two months earlier. However, hundreds of people saw him alive after his execution. His after death appearances were the talk of Jerusalem.

On this day, a loud, strange sound was heard throughout the city. It attracted thousands of people to one place. Twelve disciples of the executed man spoke to this huge crowd. The men were obviously uneducated. Yet, they spoke their message just once. Instantly and without interpreters, people from sixteen different regions heard the message--in their own native language.

One of the twelve took charge. He said what they witnessed was the result of God pouring out His Spirit. This was the actual fulfillment of Joel's prophecy (Joel 2:28-32). God's Spirit would be poured out. Their sons and daughters would prophesy. Young men would see visions, and old men would dream dreams.

With these events (Acts 2), the family of God, the community of Christians, the "called out of sin and into Christ," or the church began. That day a unique spiritual movement began. Though it was very small, it would change the world.

When evil entered this world, God began tirelessly working toward this day. Three things made Jesus' resurrection the pivotal point of history. The first was God's work and planning. The second was the pouring out of God's Spirit. The third was the visions and dreams of people.

Jesus Christ's resurrection powerfully declared a unique truth. Death could not stop God's work in Jesus. Therefore, death cannot stop God's work in the people.

The combination of (1) Jesus' resurrection, (2) God's work and purposes, (3) the Spirit's work and purposes, and (4) the visions and dreams of people who are in Christ changed the world. Not suddenly, but certainly.

What reason is the foundation for our special contribution June 7? For raising a million dollars for the renovations and the Family Life Center? We wish to blend our visions and dreams with the work and purposes of God and the Spirit. Why? To work with God, Christ, and the Spirit to produce eternal results through resurrection.

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 31 May 1998

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