In Acts 1 we find the early disciples following the Lord's instructions to go to the "UPPER ROOM "and remain in prayerful waiting until they received the promise of the Holy Spirit. They were promised power for life, ministry and witnessing unto their homeland and unto the entire world. They obeyed and Acts 2 records the fulfillment of the promise and the result was the birth of the church and now 2,000 years later God's Church is still triumphant all over this world.
In Acts 1: !3- 15 we read - " And when they were come in, they went up into an upper room, where abode both Peter, and James and John, and Andrew, Philip, and Thomas, Bartholomew, and Matthew, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon Zelotes, and Judas the brother of James. These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren. And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, ( the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty.)"
What always touches my heart as I study this passage is who attended this extended Prayer Meeting! It was God chosen leaders with other followers of Christ. Apostles and other disciples. It was men & women. The mother of Jesus was there along with now the converted brothers of Jesus. Somewhere around 120 of them and only 12 of them mentioned by name leaving 108 unknown to us but certainly very obedient people of God. I am sure many others could have chosen to obey the Lord's command to STAY & PRAY but it was these 120 that God used to birth and propel His Church! Today it is still the same. God uses "UPPER ROOM CHRISTIAN'S" to move His church forward against the " gates of hell".
I would like to point out a few things that happened to these "UPPER ROOM CHRISTIAN'S" because they were obedient to WAIT on the Lord in PRAYER!
THESE MEN & WOMEN WERE CHANGED!
These followers had been genuinely born again . They were faithful men & women to the One who had saved them. These men & women stuck it out during persecution. They were faithful to Jesus and His Word.
They were united people. Acts 1:14 tells us they were of one accord. Their focus was on one goal—to win the world. There is no place for selfishness individualism in God’s work.
They were praying people. Today as then we need people who can get ahold of God. We need God’s power.
They were Spirit-filled followers of Christ. These UPPER ROOM people saw 3,000 people saved at Pentecost as the church was birthed. They were separated people. In this passage, they were set apart from the world in the upper room. They were holy men & women chosen by God, set apart to achieve eternal purpose. Because of God's great work in their souls and their choosing to obey God changed them from the inside out and their earthly and eternal lives would never be the same. Oh how I desire to be an "UPPER ROOM CHRISTIAN!"
THESE MEN & WOMEN HAD BEEN CHALLENGED!
These “UPPER ROOM ” men and women were mission-minded men. They knew no boundaries for the gospel. No sacrafice was to great for them as they had been moved inwardly to take the gospel to the world. No price was to large to plant and help build Christ's local church. We need people in the church like this today. They allowed no distractions to rob them of the challenge God had placed in their hearts to see the church become triumphant. No disloyalty no desertion to the affairs of the world would derail them from a HOLY CHALLENGE. They were motivated to win the world to Christ. And Acts 17:6 says they turned the world upside down. What a testimony!
THESE SPIRITUAL LEADERS WERE PLACED IN CHARGE!
These eleven men were named in Scripture. God uses men to lead His people. And in the days ahead for the church God added more leaders in His church. Godly "UPPER ROOM" Pastor/Teachers, Evangelist, Prophets and Deacons. As spiritual leaders we men should determine to be servant/leaders in our church. We should be the first to say “Amen” and follow that with obedient service, giving and sharing of the gospel. We should be out front leading the way with sacrificial, obedient service leading others to such lifestyle.
These men and women are our examples today. Their lives had been changed, challenged and charged by the Saviour. They had been given a commission, and they knew it was impossible without the divine power and purpose which only is attainable through "UPPER ROOM PRAYER"!
Terry has been the Senior Pastor of Liberty for 30 years. He and his wife, Karen, have 4 children, 11 grandchildren, and 1 spoiled dog named Cooper.