ORLANDO, Fla— Fred Luter, senior minister of the Franklin Avenue Baptist Church in New Orleans, sent Florida Baptists back to their respective homes with an encouraging and powerful message from Acts 1 themed “Empowered by Another.”
Luter told those gathered at First Baptist Church in Orlando during the last session of the Florida Baptist State Convention, that the 120 believers in Acts 1 were common men and women who “turned the world upside down” for Christ.
Working without the resources that believers enjoy today like conferences, associations and conventions among others, that “handful of folks took the Gospel to all the nations,” said Luter.
He followed with a question that guided the rest of his sermon: “How did they do it?”
“They were simply empowered by another. We don’t like to wait but there is blessing in waiting. Wait on the Lord and God will empower you to do what you can’t do by yourself.”
When believers wait on God, they become a new person, said Luter. The same believers who took the Gospel to the nations in the book of Acts, he explained, had been scared and hiding before the power of the Holy Spirit of God came upon them.
“These were the same believers who were running scared but look at them now that they have been empowered by the Holy Spirit…We must wait to be empowered by the Holy Spirit of God because you can’t do this on your own,” Luter said.
A new purpose is the second fruit of waiting on the Lord. “You realize it’s not about you, your title, your agenda, your position…It’s about the bright and morning star, about a man by the name of Jesus Christ.”
Finally, those who wait on the Lord will receive new power. “The Spirit gave them boldness that they didn’t have before. It boldened and empowered them to be witnesses.”
As everyone stood and applauded the powerful message the New Orleans preacher delivered, he finished by encouraging them to go back home and be the people that others identify as people who “are turning the world upside down.”