Where Do I Get the Courage to Evangelize?

Imagine two men willing to stand before officials that ban them from talking about Jesus. Imagine being so bold that no matter the consequences, you open your mouth to tell others that everything they thought about the way of salvation was wrong. Imagine if you are looking in the eyes of people to tell them that the Jesus that they crucified is the risen Lord who offers them salvation in him alone.

Where did Peter and John get such boldness to stand like this before the Jewish council? We might say that they were bold because they were overcome with compassion for their fellow Jewish people who were lost. No doubt we do see this in the actions of the apostles, but they still have to overcome that little voice inside that may taunt them about their own physical safety.

In the first part of Acts 4:13 we read, “Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished.” If you and I are amazed at the courage of these men, we are not alone. Peter was courageously standing before the Jewish council no matter what the cost. Once before in his life he had cowered in denial before a servant girl, but now he stands before men who are ready to condemn him. What could possibly give Peter such boldness?

The second half of verse 13 simply states, “And they recognized that they had been with Jesus.” Peter and John had sat with Jesus and heard his teaching. They had heard him tell them not to fear those who can kill the body, but rather to fear him who can kill both body and soul in hell. They had seen Jesus cast out demons with great authority and calm the seas. Most of all, they had seen the resurrected Lord. They had been taught by a man who had walked out of a tomb and showed them how all of the Scriptures had pointed to his work on the cross this whole time. They watched him ascend in triumphant glory to take his seat at the Fathers right hand. They had heard his promise to return. There was nothing that could possibly overcome their renewed drive to speak of their Lord of salvation. Nothing.

When you are truly impacted by spending time with Jesus, he fills you with the riches of his glory and emboldens you to pronounce his truth. We are not Peter or John. We are not the apostles who were direct witnesses of the resurrected Lord, but we are people who have equally experienced the saving power of our resurrected King in our lives. We can see his glory in his Word and in the experience of knowing him in our life. The more we look at Jesus the more emboldened we are to stand before councils and kings just like the Apostles. How much are you soaking in the glory of Christ and allowing Jesus to embolden you in his truth?