Replacing Judas, or, Why Were There 12 Disciples? (Acts 1:13-26)

Acts 1:13-26

Here we have the story of how the disciples decide to replace Judas.  The obvious question right at the beginning, though, is “why did Judas need replacing?”  Why was it important to have 12 disciples?  Was it simply because Jesus called 12 so the disciples wanted to keep the number the same?  Or is there something deeper going on here?

We need to remember first that this is a group of Jews we are dealing with.  The separation between Judaism and Christianity had not occurred yet, so they are still thinking in their Jewish paradigms.  Where do we find the number 12 in the Old Testament?  There were 12 spies sent into Canaan…there were also 12 sons of Jacob.  Ahh, now we’re getting close.  The 12 tribes came from the 12 sons of Jacob.  And that is the key.

The People of God had been arranged into 12 tribes.  In choosing 12 disciples, Jesus was doing a couple of things.  First, he was claiming the authority to Continue reading

What is Easter Really All About? (Telling the “Big Picture” Story of the Bible #6)

What is Easter?  Maybe you think of Easter bunnies and eggs.  Maybe you think of candy.  There is nothing wrong with any of these things.

Maybe if you are a Christian, you think of individual salvation, not going to Hell, or going to Heaven.  And all of these things are true.

But what If I told you that Easter was about so much more than this?

Through the whole story of the Bible, God’s people are waiting for God to step into space and time once again, through the Messiah, to set things right once and for all.  Over and over God had promised many things to the people: that His kingdom would reign forever and ever, that God and the people would finally be together, that their relationship would be restored, and on and on. Continue reading