It seems that these days the passion for Jesus is getting less and less. Even though more people are receiving Jesus in their hearts it appears that the love of many has grown cold. Now this shouldn’t surprise us as Jesus prophesied it would happen (Matthew 24:12). As I read the book of Acts I see a big difference in the first believers than what I see today. It’s rare to see a passion like theirs today. They willingly gave their lives. They rejoiced when beaten for preaching the Gospel. Today people stop serving Jesus because someone called them names.
I want to be more like the first disciples of Jesus. I want to make sure that I am passionate for Him all the time. Why should we back down from persecution? Shouldn’t our love for Jesus compel us to do anything for Him? Not everyone will face persecution, but shouldn’t we be strong enough to be willing to face it? I don’t want to go through it, but I do want to be ready for it if it comes.
Do you have a passion for Jesus? Let’s look at a few ways that the disciples were passionate about Jesus. We can learn so much from them. As we read it, let’s use a spiritual thermometer to see where we are at.
1. Passion Caused Them to be Happy During Persecution
So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name. Acts 4:21
Instead of feeling shame for the beatings, the disciples rejoiced. They felt privileged to suffer for their master. It was a great honour to them. Would this be your response? Would you rejoice if someone beat you up for preaching Jesus? This was a tremendous attitude that the disciples had. I must admit I don’t see the same kind of passion much today.
The disciples were happy, not because of the persecution, rather they understood the cause. Jesus said that if people persecuted Him they would also persecute His disciples (John 15:20). Jesus had already forewarned them of this. For this reason, the disciples knew to rejoice. They knew they were in the centre of God’s will.
2. Passion Made Them Preach More
Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word, by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.” And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness. Acts 4:29-31
The disciples didn’t pray against the persecution. Due to their fervent passion, they pleaded for more boldness to preach! They asked Him to do more signs and wonders to call people’s attention to Him. This was the very thing that got them in trouble in the first place.
There was no backing down. As a result, many people were saved, healed and delivered. If we want to see more of this, we’ll need more passion in our lives.
3. People Recognized Their Passion
Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. Acts 4:13
People could see Jesus all over them. They were so bold in what they preached. I’m sure they spoke with such passion that the people didn’t fail to notice. The way they acted spoke of how much they knew Jesus.
When we have a passionate relationship with Jesus, people see it. Whenever anyone is passionate about anything you know within just a short time of knowing them. People talk about their passion. They tell you all about it, whether you want to hear it or not.
What is the centre of your conversation? Do you find a way to talk about Jesus to others? The disciples were so passionate that they spoke all they could about Jesus. They weren’t promoting themselves or updating their Instagram or Facebook status’. Simply put, they were talking about the One they were passionate about.
The disciples were in love with Jesus. They looked for opportunities to preach His Gospel. They understood the importance of lifting up the Name of Jesus. God healed people left, right and centre. All this can happen today! Get passionate for Jesus!
Get More Passion
As we seek God, we’ll receive more passion for Him. It’s about time that we get passionate for Jesus. Maybe you were at one time, but for different reasons you’ve lost that passion. Get it back. Make it a priority to be in God’s Presence. The more you make His Presence a priority the more you will fall in love with Him.
Take a few minutes right now just to lift your hands and praise Him. Worship Him with all you heart and allow His love to flow through you. Reach out to others and let them know about this love that you have found!
To learn more about this subject read my blog Make Jesus Your Passion
Author of Trusting God’s Timing