Detectives that work undercover assignments typically have a verbal and visual bust signal. The visual bust signal could be something innocuous like running hands through the hair. The verbal signal would be a specific word that would trigger a cover team to move in.

Working special investigations we used the code word “dynamite” whenever the undercover operative saw the evidence necessary for prosecution, signaling it was time to swoop in to arrest the bad guys.

For instance, once the detective working undercover saw the narcotics, illegal firearms, or stolen property, he or she would runs hands through the hair and say, “Looks like dynamite.” After seeing the visual signal and/or hearing the code word over the body wire that would signal the bust, we’d move in for the arrest.

In the first chapter of Acts, that is what Luke is telling us; it “looks like dynamite.” But he is drawing people in for a different reason. He is emphasizing, “I’ve seen all I need to see. I’ve seen the evidence.”

Paraphrasing, the beginning of the book of Acts, Luke reports:

I have seen all that Jesus did and taught. Moreover, seeing the resurrected Jesus should provide an unshakable confirmation of Christ’s supernatural person and work. His appearances during 40 days offered “many proofs” that would be able to verify the authenticity of his resurrection. And that’s not all! The Holy Spirit is coming for your benefit. Now go! Tell everyone what you have seen and heard.  

The next time you read the words of Luke, I hope you can appreciate he was telling us, it (the gospel) “looks like dynamite,” as he wrote his account after seeing the resurrected Christ. He was probably running his hands through his hair as he penned his observation too!

– Jim McNeff

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