Summary: Carpe diem, seizing the opportunities of this day, is a great piece of advice. We human beings only have a precious little time which God grants to us here on planet earth. We should be putting that time to good use.
Bible Teaching Ministry of
CEDAR LODGE BAPTIST CHURCH
October 3, 2004
While he was clinging to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them at the so-called portico of Solomon, full of amazement. 12But when Peter saw this, he replied to the people, “Men of Israel, why are you amazed at this, or why do you gaze at us, as if by our own power or piety we had made him walk? 13“The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him. 14“But you disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, 15but put to death the Prince of life, the one whom God raised from the dead, a fact to which we are witnesses. 16“And on the basis of faith in His name, it is the name of Jesus which has strengthened this man whom you see and know; and the faith which comes through Him has given him this perfect health in the presence of you all.
17“And now, brethren, I know that you acted in ignorance, just as your rulers did also. 18“But the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets, that His Christ would suffer, He has thus fulfilled. 19“Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; 20and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, 21whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time. 22“Moses said, ‘THE LORD GOD WILL RAISE UP FOR YOU A PROPHET LIKE ME FROM YOUR BRETHREN; TO HIM YOU SHALL GIVE HEED to everything He says to you. 23‘And it will be that every soul that does not heed that prophet shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.’ 24“And likewise, all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and his successors onward, also announced these days. 25“It is you who are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant which God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘AND IN YOUR SEED ALL THE FAMILIES OF THE EARTH SHALL BE BLESSED.’ 26“For you first, God raised up His Servant and sent Him to bless you by turning every one of you from your wicked ways.”
Acts 3:11-26 (NASB)
Carpe Diem is a phrase I first learned watching the movie “Dead Poets Society”. The movie, set in an exclusive prep school for tomorrow’s leaders of industry and politics, stars Robin Williams as the boy’s literature teacher. Williams wants the young men to learn to carpe diem, or “seize the day” – to not let the opportunities of life slip away because of cowardice or procrastination.
Carpe diem, seizing the opportunities of this day, is a great piece of advice. We human beings only have a precious little time which God grants to us here on planet earth. We should be putting that time to good use. The Bible puts it succinctly…we are to redeem the time, for the days are evil.
Carpe Diem is also expressed in the language of today’s popular culture; we are advised to “go for it”. That can be applied in many ways. The Special Olympics is my favorite for inspiration; I see men and women, very special, going for it!
There are slogans and tattoos which boast carpe Diem…press on brother…go for it…and more.
Last week we looked at the beginning of this chapter. We found Peter and John seizing the moment then. As they were entering the temple for worship they encountered a crippled beggar. Peter seized the opportunity to extend God’s grace to the man, and he was healed.
As so often happens, one carpe diem provides another. The crippled man got up, but he also leaped up, and was seen leaping all the way into the church house, and heard praising God at the top of his lung capacity!
This week’s text begins with the man hanging-on to Peter’s coat; he was probably so overcome with joy and emotion he didn’t want to lose this incredible moment. And that is what I want to talk with you about this morning – seizing the day’s opportunities for Christ – especially when it is going to cost!
Today we are going to see God’s two preachers, Peter and John in the process of showing us what it is like to live under the banner of carpe diem.
It is so easy to get caught-up in a moment, especially if the moment is exciting. Carpe diem is all about seizing the day, the opportunity of the moment. Unfortunately there are times when the moment seizes us – a rather than us seizing the moment.