Charles Stanley: Is something keeping you from obeying Jesus? (Acts 4:29-31)
Acts 4:29-31 (NIV) 29Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus." 31After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
Peter and John were warned by the hardhearted religious leaders not to speak or teach in the name of Jesus. Peter's bold response was that they had to obey God. When they gathered with the other believers, they reported what the religious leaders had told them.
They lifted their voices together in prayer and asked God to consider the threats against them. They asked for great boldness to continue in the face of those threats. Jesus' last words had sent them out into the world to teach and preach the good news. They asked for healings, signs and wonders to be performed through the name of Jesus to fulfill Jesus' instructions.
After the prayer, their meeting place was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. The fear was gone. They spoke boldly. These were some of the same people that were filled with the Holy Spirit in Acts 2. We see that God can refill us when we face fear or feel defeated. They recognized the need for the empowerment to continue in the face of threats and prayed according to the will of God. God answers that kind of prayer.
Is something keeping you from obeying Jesus? Have threats or discouragement or even defeat robbed you of that fullness you once had? Ask again! Ask in His name and for His sake, and expect God to answer.
Remember: He pours the Holy Spirit out and fills us up when we ask according to His will, in obedience to His word.