Acts 1:15-17, 21-26 (NRSV)
Verse 15In those days Peter stood up among the believers (together the crowd numbered about one hundred twenty persons) and said, Verse 16"Friends, the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit through David foretold concerning Judas, who became a guide for those who arrested Jesus- Verse 17for he was numbered among us and was allotted his share in this ministry." Verse 21So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, Verse 22beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us-one of these must become a witness with us to his resurrection." Verse 23So they proposed two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was also known as Justus, and Matthias. Verse 24Then they prayed and said, "Lord, you know everyone's heart. Show us which one of these two you have chosen Verse 25to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside to go to his own place." Verse 26And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was added to the eleven apostles.
In Acts chapter 2, Peter will deliver an incredible Pentecost sermon to people gathered from all over the world, so that all might hear of Risen Jesus. In these verses from chapter 1, however, Peter is speaking to those who already believe. This is not a public sermon, but addressed to a small gathering of believers who have an important task at hand: they need to arrange for a someone to replace Judas. The betrayer is dead and buried, and they have gathered to find a new twelfth disciple. This gathering is not unlike a council meeting in which the pastor leads the council through the process of replacing a member who has resigned. Peter explains briefly and well that it was necessary for Jesus to be killed by the hands of power and betrayed by one of his own, but then he leads the believers forward to meet the needs of a new day of mission. After prayerful deliberation, Matthias is called to join the continued ministry of the Twelve.
God of grace, you call us to join in the ministry of the believers. Grant us the faith to follow the example of Matthias and others who answer this calling. Amen.