Was The Book of Acts Supposed to End? Philip K. Dick’s Take!
Upon reviewing the Gospel of Luke and the Book of Acts recently, one ponders the timeline of the New Testament. Was it ever supposed to end? First of all, the Gospel of Luke is written as a letter to help establish a connection with Jesus through his parables and teachings and also as an investigative report on the names, places, and dates surrounding the events of Jesus’s birth, life, death and resurrection. It’s a long Gospel comparative to Matthew, and mirrors the End-time sermon from Matthew 24 on the Mt. of Olives. Whereas Mark is to the point and attention grabbing as a fast-paced brief account of the major events and drama, Luke serves as an all-purpose Gospel. John is a mystic Gospel full of passion for intimacy with the Father, containing the famous words “For God So Loved the World.” Luke remains as a little of each, and is followed by another dramatic account: the Book of Acts.
Even though people tend to take one book or letter of the Bible and pick it apart this way, I like to see the entire timeline as a whole. Some, like Philip K. Dick have argued that we are still living in the Book of Acts, right where the timeline that Luke put forth ended with the end of Paul’s ministry. With all the talk of the “Comparative Gospels” and “Synoptic Gospels” I find it far more personal to interface with God when you take the stance that the Holy Spirit is at work in and through these holy writings and that very same Holy Spirit wants to turn your own life into a part of the modern day Book of Acts.
Maybe St. Luke can help you to chart that story out, with the help of Phillip K. Dick and our modern sci-fi obsessed culture. Jesus in the book of Luke is able to, besides raise people from the dead and obtain the keys of Hell and provide eternal life, also perform a whole array of other superpowers. He hides his identity from his disciples and chides them for being so slow to believe the Prophets about His coming and the events in His life. He is able to teleport out of their midst once they realize who He is. Maybe rather than picking apart the Gospels intellectually we need to start directly interfacing with the Son of the Creator who is ready to help us step into this intense and exciting continuation of the Kingdom. He Himself said, “It is Your Father’s pleasure to give you the Kingdom.” (Luke 12:32)
If we can detoxify our attitude of the Bible from the spirit of religion, taking the same lens Luke used we can continue in the Word in each of our own personal timelines and see a God who is able to use the farthest limits of our understanding of science, pushing beyond even the farthest realms of the imagination. You could even surpass the strange revelations of the Bladerunners and Precogs, and perhaps be awakened in the middle of the night by a Kingdom messenger in your prayer time as Zacheus in the temple in Luke 1:8, declaring to you some mysterious event you are to witness.