Some people find themselves watching history unfold before their eyes—they are in the middle of events that historians will record for future generations. In the general sense, this is true of all of us in that we will witness the greatest events of all history play out before this age is over, up to and also through the Return of Jesus Christ. But this “witnessing” will include all that follows for 1,000 years and even after.
Just think of all the prophesied events you know about that will happen in the next few years. While this may be history that you might not want to witness, you will, and as the only generation scheduled to actually see what everyone else will only hear and read about later.
In 1981, I baptized a 91-year-old lady. Born in late 1890, she was the oldest person I have baptized in my ministry. But something else happened on that day, and it never left me. She spoke of the Wright brothers flying at Kitty Hawk, North Carolina, in 1903, at the age of 12. I had read about this in books, and had grown up near Dayton, Ohio, where the Wright brothers had their famous bicycle shop. But here was an eyewitness. It struck me at that moment that there are people who get to witness history in the making. Of course, most never experience this.
The book of Acts is filled with accounts of what the apostles and the early Church did. It is a book of “firsts” in regard to the Church—and people were there to witness it at every turn. This included healings and other miracles, the raising up of churches, the ordination of the first deacons, the stoning of Stephen and other forms of persecution, the gospel going to the Gentiles, beginning with Cornelius and his family in Acts 10 and 11, the selection of Paul to preach to the Gentiles, Paul’s trial, the Jerusalem conference, the death of Ananias and Sapphira, casting out demons through anointed cloths, and of course the very birth of the New Testament Church itself, on A.D. 31.
All of us in The Restored Church of God are witnessing another piece of history, one very special, and not unlike what many experienced in the book of Acts: Jesus Christ, in a very short period of time, is putting in place an entire, new trained ministry that reaches all around the world. You are witnessing what has probably never happened this quickly before, including the first century. In fact, I once believed it would not happen at all. How wrong I was.
This short “Personal” is to bring this special moment to your attention, and to tell you to both savor—and appreciate—what you are witnessing. It is also to explain that you have a special part in this history. In fact, it is a vital part without which there could not be the same level of success we are hoping for. I will tell you more about this in the sermon you will hear from me in all local churches on August 29 this year.
The book of Acts does not end with an “Amen” for a reason. We have long known that this book is not yet complete. The question becomes, “What will God record about the response of the brethren as they receive new ministers of God across the United States and on every continent of the world?”
As you soon witness history, what part will you write?