We’ve been working our way through the book of Acts for the last several months and this morning, we find ourselves in Acts chapter 12. Now I know that the book of Acts is an action-packed account of the early church – with one exciting story after another – and it seems like all of these events are happening in a matter of weeks or months. But in reality, by the time we get to Acts chapter 12, we’re actually about 12-14 YEARS after Christ’s death and resurrection. More than a decade has passed since the Holy Spirit’s first arrival on the day of Pentecost!
So a lot has happened since that time – and a lot has changed!
You know for yourself how much the world can change in a decade! Just think about your own life – how much has change for you in the last 3 years – let alone the last 12-14 years!? You’re different, your family is different, the world different! A lot of stuff changes over a decade!
And so those same kind of changes had happened in the world between Acts chapter 1 and Acts chapter 12.
Kings & governors have come and gone – and there are new authorities in places of power. The church, which once enjoyed the goodwill of all the people (according to Acts chapter 2) – is no longer looked upon quite so favourably – as we are going to see today.
But despite all these changes, the purpose and the work of God remains the same. In fact, while the world’s authorities & rulers change on a frequent basis – the ultimate and sovereign authority of God never changes. God’s Word & God’s will will prevail! You can count on it. And that’s one of the key lessons that we’re going to see in our passage today.
Acts chapter 12 – starting at verse 1 – begins like this: