Together in Christ: 'The Spirit's Choice' — Acts 2:16-18, 21:8-9

Monday, April 22, 2024

[Peter spoke to the crowds,] "No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel: 'In the last days,' God says, 'I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on my servants — men and women alike — and they will prophesy.

. . .

The next day [as Paul and his mission team were headed back to Jerusalem, they] went on to Caesarea and stayed at the home of Philip the Evangelist, one of the seven men who had been chosen to distribute food. He had four unmarried daughters who [were prophesying]. [1]

[1] From our first Bible reading text above. This is the literal translation. The NLT translates it as "had the gift of prophecy."
— Acts 2:16-18, 21:8-9 NLT

Key Thought

We often recognize that women were present when the disciples of Jesus were praying before the day of Pentecost, and the Lord Jesus poured out the Holy Spirit on that day and led three thousand to become believers. [2] However, as Peter answered the charges about the disciples being drunk while they spoke in multiple languages, he answered back with a quotation from Joel 2 about the coming of the Spirit in the last days. [3] The Spirit's outpouring emphasized the importance of both men and women servants speaking by the Spirit's lead and the sons and daughters of Israel prophesying as Jesus facilitated this Spirit-outpouring.

We should not be surprised to meet women who respectfully prayed and prophesied in the church assemblies at Corinth. [4] Philip the evangelist [5] also had daughters who prophesied before Paul [6] and probably also the entourage of men accompanying Paul on his way back to Jerusalem carrying the contribution from other churches. [7] These important women servants in the New Testament remind us of the importance of encouraging our godly women who the Holy Spirit equipped to serve God's people using their spiritual gifts [8] of speaking. [9]

[2] Acts 1:14, 2:1-4, 41.
[3] Acts 2:5-18; Joel 2:28-29.
[4] 1 Corinthians 11:5.
[5] Acts 6:1-6 NIV; Acts 8:1-25 NIV.
[6] Acts 21:7-9.
[7] Acts 19:29, 20:4-6, 22, 21:15-19, 27:2; Romans 15:25-26; 1 Corinthians 16:1-4; 2 Corinthians 8:1-14, 9:1-5; Philemon 24.
[8] Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12:7-11; Ephesians 4:11-16.
[9] 1 Peter 4:10-11.

Today's Prayer

Almighty God, please fill all your servants of the risen Christ with power and humility from the Holy Spirit. We desperately need every one of Your gifted children to serve, bless, and evangelize. Jesus, for those who remain content to be spectators rather than participants in an active life of discipleship, please open of our eyes so we can see people in need and use the gifts you have given to us to bless them. Please use me, O Lord, for Your glory and the good of Your church. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Galatians 3:26-29, 4:1-4
  • Luke 10:30-42

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Illustration

Illustration of Acts 2:16-18, 21:8-9 NLT — [Peter spoke to the crowds,] "No, what you see was predicted long ago by the prophet Joel: 'In the last days,' God says, 'I will pour out my Spirit upon all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy. Your young men will see visions, and your old men will dream dreams. In those days I will pour out my Spirit even on my servants — men and women alike — and they will prophesy.
.  .  .
The next day [as Paul and his mission team were headed back to Jerusalem, they] went on to Caesarea and stayed at the home of Philip the Evangelist, one of the seven men who had been chosen to distribute food. He had four unmarried daughters who [were prophesying]. [1]

[1]  From our first Bible reading text above. This is the literal translation. The NLT translates it as "had the gift of prophecy."

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.