Read thru New Testament Devotional – June 18, 2017

June 18

 

Acts 3

Acts 3:1-11-Peter and John went to the temple for the hour of prayer (3 p.m.-it was part of the evening sacrifice).  A man who had been lame from birth (he was 40+ years old, 4:22) was being carried to the Gate Beautiful (also called the Golden Gate), where he would sit and beg for those that were entering the temple to give him money.

 

Gate Beautiful/Golden Gate see:

http://www.biblewalks.com/Sites/GoldenGate.html

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Gate_(Jerusalem)

 

When he saw Peter and John he begged them for money.  Peter told the man, “Look at us!” (the word means not only to see, but to perceive, to understand).  Peter was telling this man to give them his full attention.  The man thought that they were about to give him some money.  Peter told him that they had no money to give him...but he would give him what he did have…and that was healing.  Peter reached out, took the man by the hand, and lifted him to his feet, saying, “In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene—walk!”  This is what Peter wanted to make sure the man did not miss and clearly understood…that his healing did not come from Peter, but from Jesus.  Immediately he was healed.  The man leapt to his feet and began to walk.  He followed them into the temple…walking and leaping and giving God praise!  When the people in the temple saw the man they were amazed because they knew that he was the one who was lame and begged for money at the Beautiful Gate.  A crowd quickly gathered around them at Solomon’s porch (portico).

 

Solomon’s porch see:

http://www.bible-history.com/jerusalem/firstcenturyjerusalem_royal_porticoes.html

 

They were “filled with wonder and amazement” as they watched the man cling to Peter and John.

Acts 3:12-26-Peter began to preach and to tell them that what had happened was because of faith in the name of Jesus.  He is quick to explain that it is not because of him or John that this man had been healed…but because of Jesus (:16).  He reminds them of the recent events surrounding the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus…”to which we are witnesses.”  Peter says that he is aware that they did not fully understand at the time Who Jesus was…because they did not understand how He was fulfilling the prophecies found in Scripture.  But now they know and should therefore repent so that “times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” (:19).  He then identifies Jesus as the Messiah...and tells them that He is in Heaven until "the period of restoration" (:21-this speaks of the Millennial Kingdom that God will establish on earth after the Second Coming of Christ).  Peter emphasizes the importance of what he is saying in three ways.  First, by telling them that it had been spoken of by the prophets, from Moses, as well as every prophet since Samuel (:22,24).  Second, he says that anyone who does not respond to these prophecies “shall be utterly destroyed” (:23).  And third, he reminds them that as Jews they were the first to receive the Messiah since they were sons of the covenant that God had made with Abraham (:25-26).

Prayer: Lord, give me the wisdom of Peter to recognize the opportunity to tell people about Jesus, the boldness to do so, and the right words to speak, so that they will receive Him as their Savior.

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