Acts 4:15-18 But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves, (16) saying, “What shall we do to these men? For, indeed, that a notable miracle has been done through them is evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. (17) But so that it spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that from now on they speak to no man in this name.” (18) So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.
The leaders were concerned that the message of Jesus should not spread further among the people. The leaders thought that this was only a human idea that could be stamped out. They were of the view that if they sufficiently threatened and punished the disciples of Jesus, then the message of Jesus would not spread.
The leaders did not realise the power of the Gospel of Jesus. *It is impossible to contain the Gospel.* The Gospel is not just head knowledge, but *the Gospel so affects us that the Gospel cannot be separated from us*.
When the Gospel reached Thessalonica through Apostle Paul and the team, we see the way the Gospel spread throughout the entire region.
I Thessalonians 1:5-8 For our gospel did not come to you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Spirit and in much assurance, as you know what kind of men we were among you for your sake. (6) And you became followers of us and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Spirit, (7) so that you became examples to all in Macedonia and Achaia who believe. (8) For from you the word of the Lord has sounded forth, not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place. Your faith toward God has gone out, so that we do not need to say anything.
The Gospel came, not only by words but by power and in the Holy Spirit and in great confidence. The Gospel could not be separated from the lives of those who went to Thessalonica to share the Gospel. The Gospel spread to every place.
When the leaders of the world do their very best to stop the spread of the Gospel they are left shocked, for the Gospel cannot be separated from the lives of those who are impacted by it.
What is it that happens in a person, because of the Gospel that makes the Gospel inseparable from the person?
It is the life of Christ that manifests from the person’s life. The life of Christ is displayed in the fruit of His Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit is the Spirit of grace and He makes it possible for a person who earlier lived a self-centred life to now become fully concerned for the well-being of others.
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
These are the graces that are demonstrated in the life of a person transformed by the Gospel. By these attributes, a person transformed by the Gospel becomes a blessing to others. This then is infectious and those impacted are also drawn to the Gospel. Thus, there is the spread of the Gospel.
There can be no law that can be passed that prevents the beautiful qualities of the Holy Spirit to be displayed in a person. The leaders could pass a law saying that there should be no speaking or teaching in the name of Jesus but they could not pass a law preventing the display of the character of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the disciples of Jesus.
This is what we as His church must be assured. The leaders of the world cannot stop the spread of the Gospel because we are a part of the Gospel and the Gospel, is a part of us. Even if they put us to death, they cannot stop the spread of the Gospel. All of Jesus’ disciples, except for John, were martyred and the church has been established all over the world.
A beautiful example of the impact of the Gospel in a person’s life is the life of Zacchaeus. He was an evil man who was selfish. Look at what happened to him because of the Gospel.
Luke 19:8-10 Then Zacchaeus stood and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord, I give half of my goods to the poor; and if I have taken anything from anyone by false accusation, I restore fourfold.” (9) And Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because he also is a son of Abraham; (10) for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”
This is God’s purpose in the life of each person through His Gospel. The devil’s agenda is to destroy lives. Whereas, the Gospel is about abundant life. John 10:10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
The Gospel will spread, whatever the world may do to His church.
- Let us be strong in the Lord - Acts 04:05-07
- The Chief Cornerstone
- Life in the Holy Spirit Romans 08:01-17(09)
- Praying for those who hurt us - Acts 04:08
- LIFE IN THE HOLY SPIRIT Romans 8:01-17(02)
- Our identity in Christ
- The comprehensive message of Jesus
- Tribulations permitted by God for the growth of the Gospel - Acts 04:04
- Witnessing the resurrection of Jesus
- Praying for those who hurt us