Why Do You Marvel At This?
Peter and John were on their way to the Temple to pray. A lame man was begging for alms at the Temple gate, and Peter declared to the lame man:
“Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” (Acts 3:6)
We know that the man received his healing. He walked and leaped and praised the Lord! (And he had been lame from his mother’s womb – meaning he had never walked before!)
The people marveled and were amazed, and flocked around Peter and John.
And Peter spoke up: “Men of Israel, why do you marvel at this? Or why look so intently at us, as though by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?”
Then Peter declared that what they just witnessed, is the God of their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob glorifying Jesus! And Peter points out plainly: The Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied! You asked for a murderer to be granted to you instead of Him! You killed the Prince of Life!
Oh man, can you imagine the panic in their hearts? The fear, the regret, the confusion, the shame.. The promised Messiah – they had killed Him. The One Who was promised to them from the beginning of time, not only had they denied Him, but they had also killed Him…(!)
And actually we all took part in this… both the Jews and the Gentiles.
But Peter announced: God raised Him from the dead!
I wonder if this made their hearts beat extra fast… He’s alive? Oh, how can I make things right again? Will He be angry with me? Will He judge me?
Peter continued: Faith in Jesus’ name has made this man strong – this man that you see and know. The faith which comes through Jesus has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
I’m thinking their hearts are racing faster and faster now. Jesus restored this man perfectly! He’s not angry? Is He that good, that kind? Would He be good to me? Can I believe in Him, too? Or is it too late?!!
Peter assured them that He knew it was ignorance that caused them to deny and kill Jesus, and He showed them through the Scriptures that it was even prophesied that these things would happen.
I’m imagining again, but I’m pretty sure they are appalled at this time. God knew!? He knew they would crucify His Son, the promised Messiah – and He still sent Him to them? And He still comes back to THEM even after His death – to love on them?!
It’s Not Too Late?
And then Peter preached: Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,
What is he saying? He’s saying, It’s not too late, guys. God raised Him from the dead! He is not dead. We get another chance to do the right thing. Change your mind (repent), and return to Him (convert), so that your sins may be blotted out!
What does that mean, Peter?
—> to be without a share in
—> to miss the mark
—> to err, be mistaken
—> to miss or wander from the path of uprightness and honour,
—> to do or go wrong
—> to wander from the law of God, violate God’s law, sin
Blotted out =
—-> to wipe off, wipe away
—> to obliterate, erase, wipe out, blot out
‘To be without a share in the Jesus-life’ is erased!
Which means I get a share in the Jesus-life.
To have missed the mark is erased!
Which means I get to live as if I never missed the mark.
To do/go wrong is erased!
Which means it’s as if my doing and going wrong never happened.
Can you imagine the amazement by now? The wonder in their eyes. Their hearts desiring Jesus. To be loved by Him. To belong to Him. To live a new life. To start over together with Jesus. To let Him carry the heavy burden of sin, and live in freedom and liberty together with Jesus.
Then Peter added on to the wonderful news:
“To you first, God, having raised up His Servant Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from your iniquities.” (v26)
Sent = apostello, sent out on a mission
Bless = eulogy, to speak well of, thank/invoke a benediction upon (!)
Wow, what a beautiful message! Grace big time!
I believe they were floored: Jesus is so, so gracious and kind to blot out my missing the mark. On top of that He’s coming especially to me, to speak kind words to me, to invoke a benediction upon me!?
Peter and John were arrested for preaching this.
But there was a great, great harvest!
Indeed, many of those who heard the word believed. The number of the men came to be about five thousand. (Acts 4:4)
Receiving this for me, as well.
Praying that you do, too:)