Summary: In Acts 3 we meet a man whose life is about to change. •For over forty years his life has been the same (4:22). •But now he is about to receive the greatest gift of his life.
Something Better Than Gold
(or, Rise up and Walk)
The Healing of the Lame Man
For all of us there are momentous events in our lives that change us forever.
•Meeting that special person you will “Your eyes meet across the room...”
•Having your first child; or adopting first child. You hold that bundle of joy, your eyes meet, and you know, you will never be the same.
•Maybe that first big career break. That job that opens up whole new vistas of opportunity.
•Maybe a medical procedure or organ transplant that will prolong your life.
•Maybe receiving a large amount of money; inheritance or winning lottery (though I know no one here plays the lottery)
In Acts 3 we meet a man whose life is about to change.
•For over forty years his life has been the same (4:22).
•But now he is about to receive the greatest gift of his life.
•Turn with me to this passage in Acts 3.
His life had not been an easy one. He had been handicapped since birth. Unable to walk.
•Life was not good in the first century for those who could not walk. No electric wheelchairs. No handicapped parking zones. No ramps into entrance-ways. Very few social welfare structures at all.
•We don’t know about his family or friends. All we know is that they could not support him so he had to resort to begging.
After 40 years he has learned the ropes.
•He knows the best times and places to beg.
•He knows to go to the Temple gate where religious minded people go; they would be the most generous.
•During the times of prayer, especially 9:00 am, and 3:00 pm. It’s 3:00 and
•I’m sure he had small hopes and expectations. To make enough money so as not to go to bed hungry. To face one more day as he had faced every day of his life.
But this day is going to be different.
Because two strangers were about to cross his path. Their names are Peter and John.
•To the beggar they are just a couple of ordinary guys among the crowds heading to the Temple.
•But these guys are special. They are been the disciples of Jesus, the Messiah.
•They had been commissioned by him to take his Gospel to the ends of the earth.
•Since the day of Pentecost they had been filled and empowered by the Holy Spirit to accomplish God’s task
He sees them and calls out to them, “Alms, alms for the poor!” And rattled his cup.
•I’m sure he was pleased when Peter stops and says, “Look at us!”; he expects to get something.
•But Peter says, “Sorry, I don’t have any money.”
•What do you think was his reaction? “This is your idea of a joke?” Teasing an old man. Why don’t you get out of the way so more generous people can see me.”
But then he gets the shock of his life.
•Read v. 6: Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” 7 Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong. 8 He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God.
Think of the scene! After forty years of lying on the ground, he can walk. He is suddenly feels strength coming to his legs. Now shouting and screaming.
But I want you to notice something: Peter and John don’t give him what he asks for. They give him something much better.
There’s a great principle here for us. Sometimes God doesn’t give us what we want. Because what we want may not be what we need.
•God doesn’t let us win the lottery.
•God doesn’t give us perfect health.
•God doesn’t even give us perfect relationships.
But God always gives us what we really need. God allows things in our life that may cause; but that produce spiritual growth; things that produce real change.
T- I want you to see three things that this story reminds us are now available through Jesus’ power.
First he healing of the lame man reminds us that through Jesus’ power, we can have:
1. True Healing, vv. 1-16
This healing reminds us that God really does have the power to heal.
•We in evangelical churches sometimes forget that. God still heals today.
•We have become so affected by our Western rationalistic mindset that we become practical agnostics.
I read an amazing story in a letter sent out by the Jesus Film project. You may have read it.
•It occurred in the Malto tribe of north India, in the state of India.