Yesterday I was talking about simply being with Jesus; getting to know Him and His revealing His heart to us. It may be obvious, but I would like to remind you that the more we are with our Lord, the more we become like Him, in purity, holiness, and love. In turn, his pure walk produces a boldness for Father. Scripture says, “The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as bold as a lion” (Proverbs 28:1). Now that is exciting. I mean, just by hanging close to your Lord an inner sense of confidence and boldness rises up. In fact, the word for bold means to be “secure and confident.” That’s just the kind of boldness the synagogue rulers saw in Peter and John (see Acts 4:1–2).
In the chapter right before this incident, in Acts 3, Peter and John had prayed for a crippled beggar and he was instantly healed. Now that act in itself took some boldness and confidence to even pray for the man, but that healing is what caused a bunch of excitement around the temple, and in an attempt to stop the disciples from sharing their faith in Christ, the religious leaders had them arrested and put on a public trial.
Peter and John met with the synagogue rulers but the Bible doesn’t tell us much about this scene in Acts 4. However, I can assure you that the religious leaders orchestrated it to be all pomp and ceremony. First, the dignitaries solemnly took their velvety seats. Then the high priests’ relatives followed. Finally, in a moment of hushed anticipation, the robed high priests strutted in. Everybody bowed as the priests passed by, walking stiffly up the aisle toward the seat of judgment. I mean, it was a big show for all the spectators.
All of this was, of course. meant to intimidate Peter and John. But the disciples were not intimidated. They had been with Jesus for too long. I want you to imagine Peter thinking, “Come on, let’s get this meeting started. Just give me the pulpit and turn me loose. I’ve got a word from the Lord for this group. Thank you, Jesus, for allowing me to preach your name to these Christ-haters.” Acts 4:8 begins with: “Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit . . .” and this tells me he wasn’t going to deliver a lecture. It wasn’t going to be quiet or reserved. Peter was a Jesus-possessed man, bursting with the Holy Spirit power and anointing.
God’s servants should be secure in their identity in Christ. They should stand confident in Jesus’ righteousness. Because of that, they have nothing to hide; they can stand before anyone with a clear conscience and speak with boldness and confidence. Not only that, the Lord will demonstrate His support of their words.