BEFORE ascending to heaven in 33 C.E., Jesus Christ gave his followers this parting commission: “You will be witnesses of me both in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the most distant part of the earth.” (Ac 1:8) They proved true to their commission.
Ten days later, at Pentecost, holy spirit came upon about 120 disciples waiting in Jerusalem, and they proceeded to speak “about the magnificent things of God.” (Ac 2:1-4, 11) On that same day, about 3,000 were baptized. (Ac 2:37-41) Within a short time, the disciples ‘filled Jerusalem with their teaching.’ (Ac 5:27, 28, 40-42) With what result? “The number of the disciples kept multiplying in Jerusalem very much.”—Ac 6:7.
From Jerusalem, the witnessing work spread out. As a result of opposition to their witnessing in Jerusalem, the disciples were scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. Again, the result was increase.—Ac 8:1, 4, 14-17.
In 36 C.E. the apostle Peter brought the good news to Caesarea, where Cornelius and his household, the first uncircumcised Gentile converts, were baptized. (Ac 10) Following that, systematic witnessing among non-Jews apparently began in Syrian Antioch. As a result, “a great number that became believers turned to the Lord.” (Ac 11:20, 21) Since then, the witnessing work has expanded to other nations and has literally reached “to the most distant part of the earth.”