Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus. Acts 4:13
This was spoken by people who didn’t like Jesus. Peter and John were standing before the Jewish leaders to explain how they healed the lame man. Peter had just finished telling them it was through Jesus, the One that they had just rejected and killed. They did this because they were Jesus’ enemies, hating everything He did and stood for.
And now here are two guys that were able to heal just like Jesus did. And they talked like Jesus and were bold but loving. They had an authority that the Jewish leaders didn’t have even though they didn’t have the schooling the leaders all had.
To us, this is a compliment if someone said they could tell we had been with Jesus. But if it is said by people with the same combatant spirit, the chances are because we’re in some kind of a showdown. I’ve had those words said to me several times: “You’re one of those.” It’s happened in college classrooms and with employers. It says in Luke 21 that when we are brought before rulers and leaders to give a defense that it will be an opportunity to witness, and that God will give us a mouth and wisdom which they won’t be able to refute. It’s true. I’ve had it happen where I’ve taken a stand and I look back and wonder how I could have been so bold. It was by the enabling power of the Holy Spirit.
If fellow Jesus followers say that they can tell that we have been with Jesus, then it is really a compliment. It is spoken out of admiration. In 2 Corinthians 2:14-17, Paul talked about how we are a fragrant aroma of Jesus because He is inside of us. When some people smell that aroma, they are drawn to us because they are believers or one day will be. But when others smell Jesus on us, it is a stench of death. They hate it.
Can people tell that you have been with Jesus because you don’t curse, or because you don’t retaliate when provoked, or because you have a peace about you? I wouldn’t say that about all Christians I know. Acts 4:13 says that the rulers were astonished when they saw Peter and John’s boldness. Do you spend enough time with Jesus that you have a holy boldness and others are astonished when they are around you?
“Live in such a way that people will realize that you have been with Jesus.” Charles Spurgeon