Summary: How the church should act
What’s in a Name? – Part 2
In the Name of Jesus we have Hope (Acts 3:21-26)
In the Name of Jesus we have Power (Acts 4:1-7)
In the Name of Jesus we can find Courage (Acts 4:8-22)
We began last week talking about “What’s in a Name,” specifically, what are the responsibilities and benefits for those who claim the name of Christ.
We began looking at Peter and John and the situation of them healing the crippled beggar at the gate of the Temple to see the example that they set for us in living our lives with the name “Christian.”
We saw that that in the Name of Jesus
We should be givers
We should be humble
We are refreshed.
We are continuing on with the story today and are asking the question
What are the responsibilities and benefits of claiming the name of Christ and what that looks like in our life?
We are going to be looking in Acts 3 and 4 (p. 772) at the story of a man who
has been crippled since birth and how Peter and John exemplified for those who claim the name of Jesus,
what we should doing and
how we should be living.
I want to briefly get us pup to speed in our story.
Peter and John were going to the temple.
They came upon a crippled beggar.
They give Him healing in Jesus name.
They display humility in His name as they give all credit and glory to Him.
They begin to speak about Jesus’ death.
And I want to read again where we left off last week in
17 "Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. 18 But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer. 19 Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, 20 and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you-even Jesus. (from New International Version)
Then going on in
21 He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. 22 For Moses said, ’The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. 23 Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from among his people.’
24 "Indeed, all the prophets from Samuel on, as many as have spoken, have foretold these days. 25 And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers. He said to Abraham, ’Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.’ 26 When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways."
(from New International Version)
What I want us to see here is that
In the Name of Jesus, We have Hope
Acts 3:21, 25b-26
21 He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets…. He said to Abraham, ’Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.’ 26 When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways."
We have hope.
Peter tells the people here that God made a promise and God is in the process of fulfilling that promise. There is hope.
There are times when things seem like there is no hope.
Like nothing is ever going to get better or improve.
Like God is not working.
But I am here to tell you today that
God is working and
there is hope.
Hope is absolutely essential to our being able to persevere through difficult times.
Satan is out there trying to convince you that there is no hope because without hope, we quit.
Wharf rats drowning illustration
There was an interesting experiment done by some scientists once.
These behavioral Scientists put some Wharf Rats in a tank of water, and observed them to see how long they would survive before drowning. The average time was 17 minutes. Then, they repeated the experiment, but this time they "rescued" the rats just before the point of drowning, dried them off and returned them to their cages, fed them, and let them play for a few days, and repeated the drowning experiment.
This time, the average survival time for these rats increased from 17 minutes to 36 hours! The scientists explained that phenomenon by pointing out that the second time around, the rats had HOPE. They believed that they could survive this, because they had done so before.