Summary: Peter’s Explanation for the lame man’s healing
Jeff Hughes – March 2, 2003
Calvary Chapel Aggieland
a. Last week we saw how God set the stage for Peter to deliver a message to the crowd gathered at the temple for evening prayer. We saw a man that was lame from his birth miraculously healed by the power of God.
b. The healing served as a visual and tangible affirmation to what Peter was about to say, even before he said it. If you remember, back in chapter 2, the Lord used Peter’s first sermon to draw 3,000 people.
c. Today, we are going to look at another appeal from Peter to the people of Jerusalem. The people gathered together for prayer that day would hear a convincing message concerning Jesus, and about what they needed to do to respond to the gospel message.
d. We are told that this message is even more effective in bringing people to Christ than Peter’s first, and we will look at the fruit of this message next week in detail.
e. But today, we are talking about Peter’s message to the crowd. If you boil everything off, what is really important in an evangelistic message, is clarity of the message. Peter’s message was crystal clear. He cut to the point, and as we will see next week, people responded in droves.
f. But first, let’s take a minute to ask the Lord to come and bless our study of His Word today.
a. When Cambridge University student Thomas Bilney bought a Greek New Testament, his interest was purely academic. But when Bilney opened God’s Word, he encountered the gospel and his entire life was transformed. Bilney felt led by God to join himself to a group that shared his beliefs.
b. This was during the Protestant Reformation, so Bilney joined the Cambridge Protestants. He began preaching and teaching , but was arrested in 1527 and threatened into silence. Bilney would not be silent. He could not keep quiet the gospel that burnrd in his heart. He was arrested, and later released with another warning, and in 1531, he was arrested one last time. Condemned as a heretic, Bilney died at the stake for the gospel of Christ.
c. Like Thomas Bliney, the apostle Peter simply could not keep quiet about Jesus. The opportunity arose to address the crowd that gathered there in the temple courts and Peter seized it.
d. You see, Peter was ready when the opportunity arose. Peter had a divine appointment that day at the beautiful gate with a lame man who was healed. Then, God provided Peter the opportunity to preach to more than 5,000 people gathered there in the outer court of the temple.
e. Like Peter, we need to be ready to share Christ with others as the opportunity arises. Paul instructs his protégée, Timothy, to this in and Timothy chapter 4, verse two, which reads – 4 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching.
f. Maybe you will have the opportunity to teach a crowd, maybe you won’t. Maybe you’ll get the chance to share with one of your friends, or co-workers, and in God’s economy, you sharing Christ with one is just as important as sharing Christ with a huge crowd. God’s work is measured in hearts, not in numbers.