Summary: This outline shows how Peter and John found a man who was lame, and healed him, as they were on their way to the Temple.
Introduction: Acts chapter 3 has the record of the first miracle after Jesus went back to Heaven. Peter and John walked by a man who was born lame, but healed him on the spot! This miracle led to an opportunity for Peter and John to preach the Gospel to the crowd who had come by.
1 They walked to the Temple
--Even though these early believers were born again, they still seemed to follow the Law. They observed and obeyed the set times for prayer (but who set these times?) There is nothing wrong with setting and observing set times, just be careful to worship the Lord, and not the clock!
--Time was the “ninth hour” or about 3 pm. The sun was beginning to set but there was still much light at this time of the day. Pentecost was 50 days or seven weeks from Passover (early to mid-April) so this day was middle- to late May.
--Never stated where exactly they lived during this time. Regardless, they made it to the Temple in time to join in with others at the afternoon hour of prayer.
2 They talked to the lame man
--He was lame or crippled, also called “maimed” or ‘halt” in various places. This man had been born with a problem and this problem had never been cured or healed.
--Only a few people are mentioned, by name, as lame; Mephibosheth, son of King Saul’s son Jonathan, was one of these (2 Samuel 9). Jesus had healed several lame people; one of these was the man at the Pool of Bethesda in John 5..
--Recurring problem of families not taking care of invalids. Lazarus had leprosy but was taken to the rich man’s gate and perhaps left there (to die?) in Luke 16. This man had been carried to the area near the Temple daily to beg alms. Why wasn’t his family helping?
--The blind man was “seeing” Peter and John and asked for alms. They gave him something else!
3 They healed the lame man!
--Did he think they were rich? How well did he know who Peter and John were? Someone once remarked that fame doesn’t always bring fortune.
--They didn’t give him any money (they didn’t have any to give, apparently!)
--But they did give him something better—healing! THE LAME MAN BEGAN TO WALK!
--He went with Peter and John into the Temple, “walking, leaping, and praising GOD (v.8)”.
--Proof of a miracle! Others knew this was the man who had used to beg but now he isn’t!
Some had shared in bringing the lame man to the Temple, maybe they took him back to a lodging place at night. But how many would he bring to the Temple because of his healing?
Conclusion: This first miracle in Acts proved that Peter and John had the same power to heal people as Jesus Himself. This and other healings were signs, miracles, intended to prove that something was different than what had been in place before. Acts records only a few miracles but all were designed to prove that Jesus was Lord and God, never for the Apostles to receive glory for anything they did.
The best thing for us to do today is preach the Gospel and make disciples. This is what the Lord commanded all of us to do in the Great Commission, recorded in the last chapter each of Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Healing the body is a good thing but making a disciple, a true follower of the Lord, is even better.
Scripture quotations were taken from the King James Version of the Bible (KJV).