Yeartext for 1980
“And now, Jehovah, . . . grant your slaves to keep speaking your word with all boldness.”—Acts 4:29.
The greatest event in human history had taken place. The Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth, had been falsely condemned and put to death; but Jehovah God had resurrected him, enabling him to act in behalf of all humankind as their ransomer and redeemer. Yes, the way was now there for people to receive forgiveness of sins with everlasting life in view. How vital that people should hear about this, have the opportunity to repent and avail themselves of God’s kind provision!
That was the situation when the words of Acts 4:29 were spoken in prayer. Earlier, the apostles Peter and John had been arrested, interrogated and ordered by the highest court of their land to stop speaking to the people about these things. Humble men, onetime fishermen from among the common people, Peter and John spoke boldly before the powerful, august body of Jewish leaders, telling them that they simply could not fail to bear witness to what they themselves had seen with their own eyes and heard with their own ears and knew to be the truth. In obedience to God, they must tell others the good news about his resurrected Son, the Chief Agent of life.—Acts 4:1-3, 8-21; 5:31.
Threatened and then released, the apostles met with their brothers. They knew the Christian congregation faced grave danger. To go on could mean persecution, imprisonment, even death. But the truth had to be made known; people must learn how God had opened up the way for life. Few and weak in themselves, opposed by powerful and numerous enemies, they laid the whole matter before God in prayer. They prayed that he, the God who foretold all these things, would now also act in their behalf. They made no request to be excused from making known the good news, no petition that he eliminate the danger or even that they might come through the trial unscathed. Rather, they prayed that they might speak out his word with the boldness this message deserved, with a confidence befitting servants who spoke the words of the Sovereign God, Maker of heaven and earth. Jehovah God answered their prayer beyond question.—Acts 4:23-31.
He will answer our prayers today and we should draw courage now from the way that trust in God and in the power of his holy spirit was rewarded then. Like another faithful Christian, Paul, let us all say: “For I am not ashamed of the good news; it is, in fact, God’s power for salvation to everyone having faith.”—Rom. 1:16.