As soon as the disciples heard about receiving a baptism of power, they asked, "Lord, wilt thou at this time restore again the kingdom to Israel"? (Act 1:6). Jesus answered in no uncertain terms: "It is not for you to know the times or the seasons, which the Father hath put in his own power" (v. 7).
Stop and think about what their question implied: "Lord, do you mean that beginning in that room, with just us, you will restore the kingdom of Israel? Are we to be the ones to bring down Herod and Rome? Are we the ones to cleanse the land, set up the kingdom and bring you back?"
We know that Jesus had to deal with the lust for leadership and authority in some of the disciples. But I sense something in their question here beyond a thirst for place and power. It speaks of a human need to be involved in some great, final destiny! It was a need to be special—to be the right people at the right time!
In their hearts the disciples may have been saying, "Lord, where are we in your prophetic schedule? It would be a great spiritual incentive to know we are at the end of one dispensation and that a new day is about to dawn. How excited we'd be if you'd let us know we are living and ministering in a day of destiny—that you are using us to wrap it all up!"
Saints, this same need to be people of destiny is in all of us to some degree. But Jesus' response to this was blunt: "It is not for you to know the times." Jesus is not looking for men or women of destiny. He wants only witnesses unto himself! He is saying, "The issue is not the 'prophetic hour,' or some great destiny appointed to you. I must have witnesses to this present generation!"
This deeply convicts me! Like so many others today, I want to know where we are at this very minute on God's prophetic clock. Are we about to enter the great tribulation? Is God gathering the final remnant of believers?
Then I hear Jesus say, "It's not for you to know. Become filled with the Holy Ghost. Wait on God, receive his power—and then go witness!" We are to live in a state of watchfulness, waiting in expectancy with our lamps trimmed and burning. We are to yearn and look for his appearing. Yes, we are to preach about his coming and warn of his judgments, but first and foremost, we are to be his witnesses!