“5 On the next day their rulers and elders and scribes gathered together in Jerusalem, 6 with Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander, and all who were of the high-priestly family. 7 And when they had set them in the midst, they inquired, “By what power or by what name did you do this?”
After Peter and John healed the lame man that sat in front of the temple, they soon found themselves in jail and standing before the rulers and the priest of the land. They were on trial for the healing and they were being asked where they received the power to heal the sick.
Peter was able to stand before the rulers and the answer the questions with the boldness of the Holy Spirit. Saying:
“10 let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. 11 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. 12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
This demonstrates the boldness that Peter was given through the Holy Spirit to speak up against the annoyance of the pharisees and the temple rules. Peter demonstrates that it is through Jesus that we are saved and offer salvation for our sins.
Peter reminds the rulers that they sent Jesus to death because they were afraid of the concept that Jesus could overthrow their authority over the church. Peter also reminds them that since Jesus was resurrected from the dead. That means that through our faith in Jesus, we are also offered a new life in Jesus.
“29 And now, Lord, look upon their threats and grant to your servants to continue to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
This indicates that the leaders of the temple and the community felt threatened by the influence of Jesus’ disciples. The pharisees and the other leaders tried to quiet the influence of the disciples by threatening them and and trying to force them to remain quiet.
The disciples gathered together after the trail of Peter and John and they prayed for strength and boldness to face the trials that will soon come from the community around them.
In this chapter we learn:
“2 And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple.”
At this time, the disabled men and women were often ostracize within their communities. Often times they are unable to enter the city that they lived, which means that these men and women were also not allowed to entered in the synagogue, which is were the people would go pray and worship their God.
When the disable man saw Peter and John he began to call out to them and trying to get their attention. Often times disabled men and women would need to pleaded and beg for money or food because they could not work to provide for themselves.
“6 But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” 7 And he took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong.”
Seeing the begging man on the side of the road, Peter turned his attention to the man and spoke to him. Peter admitted that did not have anything to give the man except the truth of who Jesus is. Peter then put out a hand to the man and lifted him to his feet.
When the man got to his feet, his ankles were strengthened and he was able to stand and walk. The man was ecstatic and he entered the synagogue to worship and pray. As he danced through the streets and greeted people, the people began to recognize him. They were also fascinated by the healing of the man and they began to ask questions of who healed the man. Their attention was then turned to John and Peter. Soon Peter addressed the astonished crowd.
Peter admits that he helped the man to his feet up, but that it was Jesus to heal the man, the same Jesus that the people who sent Jesus to be killed on the cross.
“16 And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all.”
Peter spoke earnestly on the subject of Jesus’ death and resurrection. This extends to the healing of the man that usually begs outside of the synagogue. Peter also preached that the listeners could also receive the healing that the man received.
Peter encouraged the people to repent or turn away from their sin. Sin is the the actions, thoughts and morals that pushes us away from God. These actions and morals run through all mankind and all humans suffer from this heart condition.
“25 You are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant that God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘And in your offspring shall all the families of the earth be blessed.’ 26 God, having raised up his servant, sent him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.”
Even though we live with sin in our hearts and we are often pushing away from God, Peter reminds us that through Jesus’ sacrifice, we are actually part of the family line that connects us to Jesus. Peter continues to encourage us to trust in Jesus and his love for us. Through Jesus’ sacrifice, we are given a healed heart and a new life away from our sin.
While the disciples were praying within a room, awaiting the promise of the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit entered into their lives. When the Holy Spirit entered into the lives of the disciples, they began to speak the truth of God. They also began to speak in foreign languages that the Holy Spirit has blessed them with.
When the disciples began speaking the truth to the city around them, the individuals began to question and wonder whether the disciples were drunk and babbling in the streets. It was at that time that Peter leapt to his feet and spoke to the city about Jesus, the man that was crucified and rose from the grave.
“22 “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. 23 This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men. put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.”
Peter revealed that Jesus was the man that God has brought to us to bring freedom and healing from the world of sin that we live in. Peter speaks on how Jesus was crucified for us sins so that we can approach God in prayer and with a humble heart.
Peter continues by explaining that Jesus was raised from the dead for the sole purpose of bringing all people into a personal relationship with God, where they can be transformed and given a new life through Jesus. It is in that relationship with Jesus that are a given a perfect relationship with God.
“38 Peter replied, “Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
While Peter spoke about Jesus, he spoke about repenting from our sins and being baptized in the name of Jesus. The act of repenting is turning away from our sins and our brokenness, and turning closer to Jesus.
Once a new believer repents and turns to Jesus and they are baptized, the recipient will be given the promise of the Holy Spirit, which guides us and gives us the strength to follow God fully in your daily lives.
This a promise for all who believe in Jesus’ life, his death and resurrection. This premise offers us a new life in Jesus and a personal relationship with Jesus.
Anthony K. Giesick
Actions are taken everyday that help make this world better and I just want to share them with you.