The Book of Acts The book of Act was written by Saint Luke. The date of the writing is uncertain, but most scholars favor the period 8-90 A. D. Some people think that Acts represents normative guidelines for the New Testament church for all times. In this view I think it is agreeable for the book of acts just shows the ideal church with corresponding beliefs and values. This kind of church should be present to all even up to the present times. This book, in which St. Luke records the actions of the apostles, particularly of St. Peter and St.
Paul, (whose companion in travel he was,) is as it were the centre between the Gospel and the Epistles. It contains, after a very brief re-capitulation of the evangelical history, a continuation of the history of Christ, the event of his predictions, and a kind of supplement to what he had before spoken to his disciples, by the Holy Ghost now given unto them. It contains also the seeds, and first stamina of all those things, which are enlarged upon in the epistles. The Gospels treat of Christ the head. The Acts show that the same things befell his body; which is animated by his Spirit, persecuted by the world, defended and exalted by God.
In this book is shown the Christian doctrine, and the method of applying it to Jews, heathens, and believers; that is, to those who are to be converted, and those who are converted: the hindrances of it in particular men, in several kinds of men, in different ranks and nations: the propagation of the Gospel, and that grand revolution among both Jews and heathens: the victory thereof, in Spite of all opposition, from all the power, malice, and wisdom of the whole world, spreading from one chamber into temples, houses, streets, markets, fields, inns, prisons, camps, courts, chariots, ships, villages, cities, islands: to Jews, heathens, magistrates, generals, soldiers, eunuchs, captives, slaves, women, children, sailors: to Athens, and at length to Rome.
Others view it as only descriptive for the 1st century church. Descriptive in the sense that it only describes the pattern and how the church worked during that period of time. The term “Acts” is not used, as it is sometimes with us, to denote decrees or laws or having to describe it, but it denotes the doings of the apostles. It is a record of what the apostles did in founding and establishing the Christian church.
It is worthy of remark, however, that it contains a record of the doings of Peter and Paul. Peter was commissioned to open the doors of the Christian church to both Jews and Gentiles, and Paul was chosen to bear the gospel especially to the pagan world. As these two apostles were the most prominent and distinguished in founding and organizing the Christian church, it was deemed proper that a special and permanent record should be made of their labors. While some think that it is both a normative guidelines and a description of the church of the 1st century. At the beginning of the book the author states his purpose and that is to explain to Theophilus, and to the world, how Christianity arose and began its sweep across the earth.
By this time Christianity appeared to be on the way to becoming a world religion, and some account of its beginning was needed so that it might appeal to cultured and learned people. It talks about the Day of Pentecost, empowered by the Holy Spirit; the apostles take the Good News of Jesus Christ throughout the Mediterranean world. The title is misleading, for Acts is not a record of all the original disciples of Jesus. The book gives the early history of Christianity from Christ’s ascension outside Jerusalem to Paul’s visit in Rome. Chapters 1-12 stress the work of Peter in Judea and nearby lands, mainly among Jews. Chapters 13- 28 tell of the far- ranging missionary preaching of Paul, mainly to gentiles. In my opinion it is a normative guideline for the New Testament church.
In the book of Acts, it is shown how the people and the believer should act before God. All antiquity is unanimous in ascribing this book to Luke as its author. It is repeatedly mentioned and quoted by the early Christian writers, and without a dissenting voice is mentioned as the work of Luke. The same thing is clear from the book itself. It professes to have been written by the same person who wrote the Gospel of Luke, Ac 1:1; was addressed to the same person, and bears manifest marks of being from the same pen. It is designed evidently as a continuation of his Gospel, as in this book he has taken up the history at the very time where he left it in the Gospel, Ac 1:1, 2.
It also shows that the Holy Spirit is really with His people if they will ask from it, for the Holy Spirit will be their comforter and friend. The church nowadays should be guided by the Holy Spirit for a strong foundation. The gospel should be well delivered and evangelized throughout the world by the believers. They should acts upon what is right just like what Paul and Peter did in the book of Acts where in they weren’t afraid to spread the good news among all people. This book has commonly been regarded as a history of the Christian church, and of course the first ecclesiastical history that was written. But it cannot have been designed as a general history of the church. Many important transactions have been omitted.
It gives no account of the church at Jerusalem after the conversion of Paul; it omits his journey into Arabia, Gad 1:17; gives no account of the propagation of the gospel in Egypt, or in Babylon, 1Pe 5:13; of the foundation of the church at Rome; of many of Paul’s voyages and shipwrecks, 2Co 11:25; and omits to record the labors of most of the apostles, and confines the narrative chiefly to the transactions of Peter and Paul. References: 1. Book of Acts. New Standard Encyclopedia. Volume 2. Pages 355-356. 2. Youth Bible. Holy Bible Contemporary English Version, Global Edition. Pages 861-871 3. Acts of the Apostles. Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Acts_of_the_Apostles