Summary: In verse 30 we see David was writing about one whom he knew would come because God had promised that a Messiah would set on his throne.
A. M. Fairbairn said, “The task of reason is to make impossible all religion save the best.” This
was the attitude of Peter and Paul the great evangelists of the early church. They were determined to
use all the reason and logic at their disposal to persuade men to see that Jesus Christ was the only
hope. We do not find them using force or any subtle tricks to win people. They use the Scripture
and contemporary historical facts to cause men to see the truth. Just to give you a picture of how
consistently Paul persuaded men, let me read several passages.
In Acts 13:43 we read, “Now when the congregation was broken up many of the Jews and
religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who speaking to them, persuaded them to continue
in the grace of God.” In Acts 18:4 we read, “And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and
persuaded the Jews and Greeks.” In Acts 19:8, “And he went into the synagogue, and spake boldly
for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God.”
In the last reference we see that Paul sought to persuade men to his dying day. In Acts 28:23 we
read, “...there came many to him unto his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom
of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets,
from morning til evening.”
Try and visualize what this means. Paul was constantly going over the Old Testament and
showing how it was fulfilled in Jesus Christ. Hours and hours he spent with the Jews who knew the
Old Testament. It was for 3 months in one place. Imagine how they covered every conceivable
Messianic passage. The Jews would seek to show how they were not yet fulfilled, and Paul would
show them how Jesus did fulfill them, just as Peter is doing at Pentecost. Now to make the picture
perfect let me read to you the words of Jesus as He rebuked the two on the road to Emmaus. In
Luke 24:25-27 we read, “..O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken:
ought not Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory? And beginning at Moses
and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself.”
Nothing is more clearly taught in the New Testament than the fact that Jesus was the focus
point of all the Old Testament prophecies, and that the New Testament church used fulfilled
prophecy as the greatest method of persuading Jews to receive Jesus as their Messiah. The tragedy
is that this method of evangelism was laid aside in favor of force, and the result was that the church
became the biggest wall between Jews and Jesus. The church began to force Jews to be baptized.
The Inquisition in Spain had a demonic scheme whereby they could eliminate Jews. They were
forced to be baptized and become Christians, and then they were tried for being heretical Christians,
and the penalty was death. Then all the property of heretics went to the church.
Jacob Jocz in The Jewish People And Jesus Christ records the whole shocking history of this
abuse of power right up to modern times. He writes, “The compulsory hearing of sermons by Jews
in Christian churches was already practiced in the 13th century. Two centuries later it became a
general custom, especially in Italy. Abrahams records the comic situation that the ears of the Jews
use to be examined on entering the churches for they were suspected of stopping them with cotton.
Overseers were appointed to ensure that the Jews remained awake during the 2 hour sermon
delivered to them...the Bull of Benedict XIII of 1415 decreed that 3 public sermons were to be
preached to the Jews annually and that all above 12 years of age should be compelled to attend to
hear these sermons.”
It was not until the 18th century that the church got back to the New Testament method of
persuasion, and Jews again began to receive Jesus as their Messiah. History demonstrates that Peter
was led of the Holy Spirit in his sermon at Pentecost, for the only way devout Jews could be won
would be by a persuasive demonstration that Jesus of Nazareth fulfilled the messianic prophecies. Peter had made it clear that as Jews they were guilty for the death of Jesus, whom they admitted
who was a worker of miracles and a man of God. Now in verse 24 he states that God raised him up.
God did not accept the judgment of the Jews. Their court gave Him up to death, but the supreme
court, which was God himself, raised Him up to life. He was loosed from death, for it was