"Psalm 23," John August Swanson. Used by permission from the artist.
Image © by John August Swanson. Artwork held in the Luther Seminary Fine Arts Collection, St. Paul, Minn.
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You Shall Be My Witnesses
Acts 1:1-14 Commentary
by O. Wesley Allen Jr.
Historically, Acts has been read by the church in worship during the Season of Easter.
This is because it is the only narrative in the New Testament that tells the story of the community that formed in the wake of -- that is, was formed by -- Christ’s resurrection. As the second work in Luke’s two-volume narrative, Acts carries forward many of the theological themes and plot developments introduced in the Gospel of Luke. Thus, even though the liturgical year may have developed so that Acts 1:1-14 is read forty days after Easter Sunday, due to Luke’s timeline of the Ascension occurring forty days after the resurrection, it is quite appropriate to turn to the beginning of Acts on the Second Sunday of Easter.
In this passage, Luke does three main things to initiate the storyline of Acts. First, he connects the second volume to the first (Acts 1:1-3). Second, he foreshadows the narrative structure and purpose of the whole of Acts (Acts 1:4-8). Finally, he tells the story of the ascension in order to get Jesus off stage in order to make room for the age of the ...
| Bible Text
2019-20 Worship resources
The narrative lectionary is a four-year cycle of readings. Read more.
NL221: You Shall Be My Witnesses
April 03, 2016
This podcast discusses Acts 1:1-14, the Narrative Lectionary readings for Apr. 3, 2016.