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So when they had come together, they asked him, “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” (Acts 1:6 ESV)
For the month of May, Dr. Randy Carlson is giving us, “Today’s Word for Your Life.” And as you can see from the above title, today’s word is QUESTIONS.
There are a lot of great questions that Christ asked; some to the people, many to His disciples and many to the Pharisees and their cronies. One of the questions Dr. Randy considers is probably the most important question that Christ asked, Who do people say that I am? That is an extremely important question even today, 2000 years later.
But I’d like us to consider the question that was important to the disciples — maybe too important. And that’s today’s verse. “Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?” The kingdom of Israel being restored and Christ being its king was the subject of both earnest seekers and scoffers.
One of the earliest references to Jesus being king is found in Gabriel’s dialogue with Mary:
He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end. (Luke 1:32-33 ESV)
When Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the temple, the prophet Anna was there to see Him:
Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:38 ESV)
Perhaps the first question about Christ and His kingdom was asked by the Magi, speaking to Herod:
Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him. (Matthew 2:2)
All four Gospels proclaim Him as King at His triumphal entry. Here’s what John had to say:
Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the king of Israel! (John 12:13 NIV)
On the day of the crucifixion we have Pilate proclaiming Him, “King of the Jews,” but that was probably to annoy the Pharisees. At the cross we have the Pharisees mocking Him and calling Him “King of the Jews.”
Then on Easter Sunday, before they knew Jesus had risen, two disciples on their way to Emmaus said this in the conversation with Jesus (whom they did not recognize):
But we had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel. (Luke 24:21 ESV)
And that brings us back to today’s verse. Understand, this was the last question. This was the last thing the disciples said to Jesus before he ascended into Heaven. But for the disciples, Hhe being Kking and restoring Israel was more than a question — it was their agenda. So, what’s your question (or agenda)?
Today’s One Thing
How do we avoid confusing prayer with promoting our agenda? I believe it’s all about perspective. His perspective.
Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4 ESV)
So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. (Matthew 6:31-33 NIV)
And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. (1 John 5:14-15 ESV)
If you truly do delight in the Lord, then you will indeed seek Him first, and you will know Him, and know His will.
Watch Dr. Randy Carlson’s Intentional Living Minute on QUESTIONS. You can even get them in your email when you go to TheIntentionalLife.com/minute.