“Who by the mouth of Your servant David have said:
‘Why did the nations rage,
And the people plot vain things?
The kings of the earth took their stand,
And the rulers were gathered together
Against the Lord and against His Christ.’
For truly against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done.” (Acts 4:25-28)
You can learn a lot about a person by hearing them pray, and you can learn a lot about a church by their prayer meetings. In Acts 4 we see a prayer meeting in the early church, and it shows us wonderful things about the early church. Their prayer began with three important principles (Acts 4:23-24), and at Acts 4:25 it shows us something else important about prayer.
When the early church prayed in Acts 4, they prayed God’s word. We don’t specifically who spoke these specific words, but they voiced the unified heart of the whole prayer meeting. They said, by the mouth of Your servant David have said. This was the heart of all the disciples that the prayer meeting (remember they prayed with one accord). They recognized that words of the Old Testament (Psalm 2 to be exact) were really the words of God. God was speaking by the mouth of [His] servant David.
It’s an important point. The apostles and prophets believed that the words of King David, recorded in Psalm 2, were actually the words of the Lord God, said by the mouth of King David. The earlier Christians had a high view of the Holy Scriptures.
Why did the nations rage, and the people plot vain things? Their unified prayer quoted Psalm 2 because the disciples quoted Psalm 2 because he and the other disciples understood what happened by seeing what the Bible said about it. From Psalm 2, they understood that they should expect this sort of opposition and not be troubled because of it because God was in control of all things.
When we pray, we must see our circumstances in light of God’s Word. In conflict, we see the spiritual battle (Ephesians 6:12). When there is sin, we confess and repent (Psalm 32:3-4). When we need strength, we rely on God’s promises (Ephesians 3:16).
With this confidence they could say to God, do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done. Because they saw their circumstances in light of God’s Word, they could recognize that the wrath of man never operates outside of the sphere of God’s control; these enemies of Jesus could only do whatever the hand of God allowed.
This brings real peace, knowing that whatever comes my way has passed through God’s hand first, and He will not allow even the most wicked acts of men to result in permanent damage.
Today, let God’s word give you confidence and peace that He is in control!