Acts is one of the most exciting books of the Bible - full of action, ideas, and conflict. The central concern of the book of Acts is expressed in the promise the Lord Jesus gave to His disciples at the very beginning of the book, “You shall receive power.” Acts teaches us plainly that our mission is not only local but global in scope. The disciples were witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea, and the uttermost parts of the earth. All throughout the book of Acts, men boldly proclaimed the gospel by the power of the Holy Spirit.
In Acts, God is glorifying Himself through the power of the Holy Spirit, so that He might demonstrate His superior goodness in the salvation sinners, the damnation of the wicked, and for the preservation of His people, for His eternal glory, and their eternal joy.
Luke was a historian and physician. He was also Paul’s traveling companion, which explains the many references to “we” and “us” in the parts of the Book of Acts that record details of Paul’s ministry.
“The former account I made, O Theophilus, of all that Jesus began both to do and teach…”
“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
“Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Men and brethren, what shall we do?’ “Then Peter said to them, ‘Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call.’ ”
“So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered and said to them, ‘Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.’ ”
What did Jesus mean when He told the disciples that they would be His witnesses?
That they would tell people about Jesus (Acts 1:8).
How did the Jews respond to Peter’s preaching?
They repented and were baptized (Acts 2:41).
Why do you think Peter referred to God as “The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob” (Acts 3:13)?
The audience was Jewish and they knew God by His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (Acts 3:1).
What is special about the name of Jesus?
It is the only name by which we can be saved (Acts 4:12).
Why was God’s punishment to Ananias and Sapphira so severe?
Because they lied to the Holy Spirit (Acts 5:3).
Who were the seven men that the church selected to serve the widows and why were they needed?
Stephen, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolas (Acts 6:5); They were given this task so that the apostles could devote themselves to prayer and to the Word (Acts 6:4).
Why was Stephen put to death?
The people were convicted through his preaching (Acts 7:54).
Why did the Holy Spirit lead Philip into the desert?
To share the gospel with the Ethiopian eunuch (Acts 8:35).
Describe Saul’s encounter with Jesus.
Jesus confronted him, saying, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me” (Acts 9:4)? Saul then surrendered his life to Him (9:6).
Why did God send Peter to Cornelius’s house?
To share the gospel with him and his household (Acts 10:34–43).
How did the Christians in Jerusalem respond to Peter’s account of the conversion of Cornelius?
They glorified God (Acts 11:18).
How did God deal differently with Peter than with James?
He allowed James to be killed (Acts 12:2), but rescued Peter from prison (12:17).
Stephen preached in Acts 7 and Paul preached in Acts 13. How were they similar? How were they different?
Both men reminded them of Israel’s history (Acts 13:17). Paul focused on the Gentiles at the end of the sermon (13:47), while Stephen had accused the Jews of being stubborn and rebellious.
Why did the Lycaonians think that Paul and Barnabas were gods? How did Paul and Barnabas respond?
God healed a crippled man through Paul (Acts 14:11). They tore their clothes and rebuked them (14:14–15).
What decision did the leaders in Jerusalem reach concerning Gentile Christians?
That they should “abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood” (Acts 15:20).
How do you think the jailer knew that Paul and Silas could tell him how to be saved?
They had been singing hymns and praying (Acts 16:25).
Why were the Bereans considered more “fair-minded” than the Thessalonians?
They received the word eagerly and searched the Scriptures for themselves (Acts 17:11).
What do you think Paul meant when he told the Jews, “Your blood be on your own heads”?
Because they had rejected Paul’s preaching, they were responsible for their own destruction (Acts 18:6).
What was Demetrius’ livelihood?
He was a silversmith who made shrines of the goddess Diana (Acts 19:24)
Why did Demetrius want Paul to stop preaching the gospel?
Because the gospel threatened Demetrius’ livelihood (Acts 19:25).
What can we learn from the account of Eutychus’ death?
To pay attention when the Word is preached and not to allow ourselves to fall asleep (literally and figuratively) (Acts 20:9).
Why didn’t Paul listen to those who told him not to go to Jerusalem?
He was prepared to die in Jerusalem for the name of Jesus (Acts 21:13).
What did Paul say that made the Jews stop listening to him?
That God was sending him to the Gentiles (Acts 22:21).
How did Jesus comfort Paul the night following his trial?
He stood near Paul and told him that he was going to have the opportunity to preach the gospel in Rome (Acts 23:11).
How did Felix respond to the gospel?
He was afraid but did not repent and believe (Acts 24:25).
Compare Festus’ response to Felix’s.
Felix was afraid but Festus could only think of how he might do the Jews a favor (Acts 25:9).
How does Agrippa’s response compare to those of the other two rulers?
Agrippa seems to have been the most affected, telling Paul, “You almost persuade me to become a Christian” (Acts 26:28).
What do you think Paul was doing during the storm? How do you know?
The message the angel brought to Paul saying that God had granted him the lives of everyone on the ship implies that he had been praying (Acts 27:24).
Why did Paul quote the prophet Isaiah when he was speaking to the Jews in Rome?
The Jews rejected the Word of God as Isaiah prophesied they would (Acts 28:25).