Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed. So when Peter saw it, he responded to the people: “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? The God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified His Servant Jesus, whom you delivered up and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go. But you denied the Holy One and the Just, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and killed the Prince of life, whom God raised from the dead, of which we are witnesses. And His name, through faith in His name, has made this man strong, whom you see and know. Yes, the faith, which comes through Him, has given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.
“Yet now, brethren, I know that you did it in ignorance, as did also your rulers. But those things, which God foretold by the mouth of all His prophets, that the Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled. 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, and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which God has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began. For Moses truly said to the fathers, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a Prophet like me from your brethren. Him you shall hear in all things, whatever He says to you. And it shall be that every soul who will not hear that Prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.’ Yes, and all the prophets, from Samuel and those who follow, as many as have spoken, have also foretold these days. You are sons of the prophets, and of the covenant, which God made with our fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘And in your seed all the families of the earth shall be blessed.’ 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.”
Peter makes the following points:
- The same Jesus whom they denied and wanted killed is the same One who healed the lame man. It was faith in His name that made the man strong. Faith heals. It was faith which comes through Jesus that gave the man the ability to do something he had never been able to do—walk and not only walk, and leap, praising God.
- The people acted in ignorance as did their leaders but God had prophesied that Jesus would suffer through the prophets. All these things were fulfilled. Isaiah wrote in great detail about the suffering Jesus would endure for our sakes.
- Moses himself spoke of Jesus. He said that those who will not heed whatever He said to them would be cut off from God’s people.
The evidence was there. Jesus even quoted a passage from the book of Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
Because He has anointed Me
To preach the gospel to the poor;
He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,
To proclaim liberty to the captives
And recovery of sight to the blind,
To set at liberty those who are oppressed;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”
Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”
God sent Jesus to the Jews and raised Him from the dead so that they would be the first ones to have a chance to repent and turn from their wicked ways. Jesus had commissioned them to preach the Gospel first in Jerusalem, then in Judea and Samaria. The same people who had rejected Jesus were the same whom the disciples were sent to first. When Jesus was on the cross, He had asked God to forgive them, “for they do not know what they do” (Luke 23:34). God was honouring that request by giving the people another opportunity to accept His Son. It is God’s desire that whoever believes in Jesus should not perish but have eternal life. This should be our desire too. We should not want to see anyone lose out on spending eternity with Jesus. This is why we should make ourselves available to go out into the world and turn hearts towards Jesus.
Acts 3:11-26; Luke 4:18-21