1 In my first book, Theophilus, I wrote about what Jesus began to do and teach. This included everything from the beginning [of his life] 2 until the day he was taken to heaven. Before he was taken to heaven, he gave instructions through the Holy Spirit to the apostles, whom he had chosen. 3 After his death Jesus showed the apostles a lot of convincing evidence that he was alive. For 40 days he appeared to them and talked with them about the kingdom of God. 4 Once, while he was meeting with them, he ordered them not to leave Jerusalem but to wait there for what the Father had promised. Jesus said to them, "I've told you what the Father promises: 5 John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit." 6 So when the apostles came together, they asked him, "Lord, is this the time when you're going to restore the kingdom to Israel?" 7 Jesus told them, "You don't need to know about times or periods that the Father has determined by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes to you. Then you will be my witnesses to testify about me in Jerusalem, throughout Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." 9 After he had said this, he was taken to heaven. A cloud hid him so that they could no longer see him. 10 They were staring into the sky as he departed. Suddenly, two men in white clothes stood near them. 11 They asked, "Why are you men from Galilee standing here looking at the sky? Jesus, who was taken from you to heaven, will come back in the same way that you saw him go to heaven." 12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mountain called the Mount of Olives. It is near Jerusalem, about half a mile away. 13 When they came into the city, Peter, John, James, Andrew, Philip, Thomas, Bartholomew, Matthew, James (son of Alphaeus), Simon the Zealot, and Judas (son of James) went to the second-story room where they were staying. 14 The apostles had a single purpose as they devoted themselves to prayer. They were joined by some women, including Mary (the mother of Jesus), and they were joined by his brothers. 15 At a time when about 120 disciples had gathered together, Peter got up and spoke to them. He said, 16 "Brothers, what the Holy Spirit predicted through David in Scripture about Judas had to come true. Judas led the men to arrest Jesus. 17 He had been one of us and had been given an active role in this ministry. 18 With the money he received from the wrong he had done, he bought a piece of land where he fell headfirst to his death. His body split open, and all his internal organs came out. 19 Everyone living in Jerusalem knows about this. They even call that piece of land Akeldama, which means 'Field of Blood' in their dialect. 20 You've read in Psalms, 'Let his home be deserted, and let no one live there,' and 'Let someone else take his position.'" "Therefore, someone must be added to our number to serve with us as a witness that Jesus came back to life. 21 He must be one of the men who accompanied Jesus with us the entire time that the Lord Jesus was among us. 22 This person must have been with us from the time that John was baptizing people to the day that Jesus was taken from us." 23 The disciples determined that two men were qualified. These men were Joseph (who was called Barsabbas and was also known as Justus) and Matthias. 24 Then they prayed, "Lord, you know everyone's thoughts. Show us which of these two you have chosen. 25 Show us who is to take the place of Judas as an apostle, since Judas abandoned his position to go to the place where he belongs." 26 They drew names to choose an apostle. Matthias was chosen and joined the eleven apostles.
1 When Pentecost, the fiftieth day after Passover, came, all the believers were together in one place. 2 Suddenly, a sound like a violently blowing wind came from the sky and filled the whole house where they were staying. 3 Tongues that looked like fire appeared to them. The tongues arranged themselves so that one came to rest on each believer. 4 All the believers were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages as the Spirit gave them the ability to speak. 5 Devout Jewish men from every nation were living in Jerusalem. 6 They gathered when they heard the wind. Each person was startled to recognize his own dialect when the disciples spoke. 7 Stunned and amazed, the people in the crowd said, "All of these men who are speaking are Galileans. 8 Why do we hear them speaking in our native dialects? 9 We're Parthians, Medes, and Elamites. We're people from Mesopotamia, Judea, Cappadocia, Pontus, the province of Asia, 10 Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt, and the country near Cyrene in Libya. We're Jewish people, converts to Judaism, and visitors from Rome, 11 Crete, and Arabia. We hear these men in our own languages as they tell about the miracles that God has done." 12 All of these devout men were stunned and puzzled. They asked each other, "What can this mean?" 13 Others said jokingly, "They're drunk on sweet wine." 14 Then Peter stood up with the eleven apostles. In a loud voice he said to them, "Men of Judea and everyone living in Jerusalem! You must understand this, so pay attention to what I say. 15 These men are not drunk as you suppose. It's only nine in the morning. 16 Rather, this is what the prophet Joel spoke about: 17 'In the last days, God says, I will pour my Spirit on everyone. Your sons and daughters will speak what God has revealed. Your young men will see visions. Your old men will dream dreams. 18 In those days I will pour my Spirit on my servants, on both men and women. They will speak what God has revealed. 19 I will work miracles in the sky and give signs on the earth: blood, fire, and clouds of smoke. 20 The sun will become dark, and the moon will become as red as blood before the terrifying day of the Lord comes. 21 Then whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.' 22 "Men of Israel, listen to what I say: Jesus from Nazareth was a man whom God brought to your attention. You know that through this man God worked miracles, did amazing things, and gave signs. 23 By using men who don't acknowledge Moses' Teachings, you crucified Jesus, who was given over [to death] by a plan that God had determined in advance. 24 But God raised him from death to life and destroyed the pains of death, because death had no power to hold him. 25 This is what David meant when he said about Jesus: 'I always see the Lord in front of me. I cannot be moved because he is by my side. 26 That is why my heart is glad and my tongue rejoices. My body also rests securely 27 because you do not abandon my soul to the grave or allow your holy one to decay. 28 You make the path of life known to me. In your presence there is complete joy.' 29 "Brothers, I can tell you confidently that our ancestor David died and was buried and that his tomb is here to this day. 30 David was a prophet and knew that God had promised with an oath that he would place one of David's descendants on his throne. 31 David knew that the Messiah would come back to life, and he spoke about that before it ever happened. He said that the Messiah wouldn't be left in the grave and that his body wouldn't decay. 32 "God brought this man Jesus back to life. We are all witnesses to that. 33 God used his power to give Jesus the highest position. Jesus has also received and has poured out the Holy Spirit as the Father had promised, and this is what you're seeing and hearing. 34 David didn't go up to heaven, but he said, 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Take my highest position of power 35 until I put your enemies under your control."' 36 "All the people of Israel should know beyond a doubt that God made Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ." 37 When the people heard this, they were deeply upset. They asked Peter and the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?" 38 Peter answered them, "All of you must turn to God and change the way you think and act, and each of you must be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins will be forgiven. Then you will receive the Holy Spirit as a gift. 39 This promise belongs to you and to your children and to everyone who is far away. It belongs to everyone who worships the Lord our God." 40 Peter said much more to warn them. He urged, "Save yourselves from this corrupt generation." 41 Those who accepted what Peter said were baptized. That day about 3,000 people were added [to the group]. 42 The disciples were devoted to the teachings of the apostles, to fellowship, to the breaking of bread, and to prayer. 43 A feeling of fear came over everyone as many amazing things and miraculous signs happened through the apostles. 44 All the believers kept meeting together, and they shared everything with each other. 45 From time to time, they sold their property and other possessions and distributed the money to anyone who needed it. 46 The believers had a single purpose and went to the temple every day. They were joyful and humble as they ate at each other's homes and shared their food. 47 At the same time, they praised God and had the good will of all the people. Every day the Lord saved people, and they were added to the group.
1 Peter and John were going to the temple courtyard for the three o'clock prayer. 2 At the same time, a man who had been lame from birth was being carried by some men. Every day these men would put the lame man at a gate in the temple courtyard. The gate was called Beautiful Gate. There he would beg for handouts from people going into the courtyard. 3 When the man saw that Peter and John were about to go into the courtyard, he asked them for a handout. 4 Peter and John stared at him. "Look at us!" Peter said. 5 So the man watched them closely. He expected to receive something from them. 6 However, Peter said to him, "I don't have any money, but I'll give you what I do have. Through the power of Jesus Christ from Nazareth, walk!" 7 Peter took hold of the man's right hand and began to help him up. Immediately, the man's feet and ankles became strong. 8 Springing to his feet, he stood up and started to walk. He went with Peter and John into the temple courtyard. The man was walking, jumping, and praising God. 9 All the people saw him walking and praising God. 10 They knew that he was the man who used to sit and beg at the temple's Beautiful Gate. The people were amazed and stunned to see what had happened to him. 11 They were excited, and everyone ran to see them at the place called Solomon's Porch. The man wouldn't let go of Peter and John. 12 When Peter saw this, he said to the people, "Men of Israel, why are you amazed about this man? Why are you staring at us as though we have made him walk by our own power or godly life? 13 The God of our ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed Jesus over to Pilate. You rejected him in Pilate's presence, even though Pilate had decided to let him go free. 14 You rejected the man who was holy and innocent. You asked to have a murderer given to you, 15 and you killed the source of life. But God brought him back to life, and we are witnesses to that. 16 We believe in the one named Jesus. Through his power alone this man, whom you know, was healed, as all of you saw. 17 "And now, brothers, I know that like your rulers you didn't know what you were doing. 18 But in this way God made the sufferings of his Messiah come true. God had predicted these sufferings through all the prophets. 19 So change the way you think and act, and turn [to God] to have your sins removed. 20 Then times will come when the Lord will refresh you. He will send you Jesus, whom he has appointed to be the Christ. 21 Heaven must receive Jesus until the time when everything will be restored as God promised through his holy prophets long ago. 22 "Moses said, 'The Lord your God will send you a prophet, an Israelite like me. Listen to everything he tells you. 23 Those who won't listen to that prophet will be excluded from the people.' 24 Samuel and all the prophets who followed him spoke about these days. 25 You are the descendants of the prophets and the heirs of the promise that God made to our ancestors when he said to Abraham, 'Through your descendant all people on earth will be blessed.' 26 God has brought his servant back to life and has sent him to you first. God did this to bless you by turning every one of you from your evil ways."