Monday, April 4, 2011

The Author of Life

There were a few things that stood out to me in Acts 3 tonight (I copied the chapter at the bottom of this entry if you're interested):

1) Peter's audience that he addressed weren't the only ones who killed the "Author of life" (verse 15); my sin combined with God's love for me is why He was hanging on that tree. He didn't have to come, but God's love is far greater than my sin could ever be. The Author of life ... died for me.

2) The fact that the beggar who was restored to "perfect health" (verse 16) still was given Peter's hand to help him rise (verse 7) says something. I think I could probably write two pages on that alone from different perspectives, but I know one thing; it says something significant. I don't just see a miracle here, I see discipleship.

3) "times of refreshing" (verse 20) means something very different than R&R. The more I worship, the more I serve, and the more I submit are the times I feel Spiritually refreshed. It's peace, and it's the kind of peace that Paul speaks of when he's in chains. That peace that some have in the midst of turmoil around them.

4) I also saw a healing of a beggar that didn't ask for it. Strange at first, until I saw how God was glorified in not only the beggar's reaction, but the crowd that got to hear the Gospel. I see a moment that was used to witness. This healing didn't make a beggar walk, it saved souls!

Father, thank you for how you reveal Yourself in Your Word. May I learn to meditate on It and let It transform me, and not just inform me. Continue to light my path so it leads to you, and make me bold to have confidence in sharing everything you freely offer. Your salvation you freely give along with the love, peace, and joy it comes with is not something you want me to keep to myself; may my eyes be open to the opportunities You give me so that I can share them. In Jesus' precious name I pray. Amen.

Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. 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. Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. 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!” And he took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. And leaping up he stood and began to walk, and entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God, and recognized him as the one who sat at the Beautiful Gate of the temple, asking for alms. And they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.
While he clung to Peter and John, all the people, utterly astounded, ran together to them in the portico called Solomon's. And when Peter saw it he addressed the people: “Men of Israel, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we have made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified his servant Jesus, whom you delivered over and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him. But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. 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.
“And now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago. Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers. You shall listen to him in whatever he tells you. And it shall be that every soul who does not listen to that prophet shall be destroyed from the people.’ And all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and those who came after him, also proclaimed these days. 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.’ God, having raised up his servant, sent him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.”
(Acts 3 ESV)

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