The apostles were at the Mount of Olives when this happened, so they walked the half mile back to Jerusalem. Then they went to the upstairs room of the house where they were staying. Here is the list of those who were present:
James (son of Alphaeus),
Simon (the Zealot),
and Judas (son of James).
They all met together continually for prayer, along with Mary the mother of Jesus, several other women, and the brothers of Jesus.
During this time, on a day when about 120 believers were present, Peter stood up and addressed them as follows:
“Brothers, it was necessary for the Scriptures to be fulfilled concerning Judas, who guided the Temple police to arrest Jesus. This was predicted long ago by the Holy Spirit, speaking through King David. Judas was one of us, chosen to share in the ministry with us.”
(Judas bought a field with the money he received for his treachery, and falling there, he burst open, spilling out his intestines. The news of his death spread rapidly among all the people of Jerusalem, and they gave the place the Aramaic name Akeldama, which means “Field of Blood.”)
Peter continued, “This was predicted in the book of Psalms, where it says, `Let his home become desolate, with no one living in it.’ And again, `Let his position be given to someone else.’
“So now we must choose another man to take Judas’s place. It must be someone who has been with us all the time that we were with the Lord Jesus- from the time he was baptized by John until the day he was taken from us into heaven. Whoever is chosen will join us as a witness of Jesus’ resurrection.”
So they nominated two men: Joseph called Barsabbas (also known as Justus) and Matthias. Then they all prayed for the right man to be chosen. “O Lord,” they said, “you know every heart. Show us which of these men you have chosen as an apostle to replace Judas the traitor in this ministry, for he has deserted us and gone where he belongs.” Then they cast lots, and in this way Matthias was chosen and became an apostle with the other eleven.
Some interesting points:
- The disciples met continually for prayer. They fellowshipped with one another.
- God’s Word is reliable because predictions were made about Judas Iscariot and they came to pass. God Himself declared, “Everything I prophesied has come true, and now I will prophesy again. I will tell you the future before it happens”
- The disciples followed the Word of God and decided to choose another man to take Judas’ place
- When it came to choosing Judas’ replacement, they prayed about it first and then they cast lots.
We must be in constant prayer and fellowship with other believers. We can trust God’s word because it is reliable. When God says something is going to happen, it does. We must follow the Scriptures when the Holy Spirit brings them to our recollection. Peter quoted several texts from the Bible and then he acted on God’s clear message which was to choose another man to take Judas’s place and that he must be someone who was around since the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. They nominated two men and then they prayed for the right one to be chosen. When it comes to making very important decisions, we need to pray. God will give us the guidance and answers we need.
Acts: 1:12-26; Isaiah 42:9