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WGO?

Peter heals a lame beggar and preaches to the crowd who have gathered because of the miracle.

 

WTP?

1. Evangelism can look like going to another church’s bible study (1; Act 17:1-3; Deu 33:10; Mal 2:7; Joh 18:20 = Temple courts [e.g., Solomon’s Portico] were where the people in Jerusalem would go to find teaching from various experts on the Law [priests/scribes, lawyers/judges, Pharisees, Sadducees, etc.,]. Hence the reason Jesus went to the Temple to teach – because He knew the religiously inclined wb there; Similar Act 16:13 = Bible studies were not always held in synagogues or the Temple [see also Act 20:20 “teaching…house to house”).

 

2. It is the job of the covenant community to see that those born w/disabilities are provided with the financial support necessary to care for their needs (1-2, “alms” = Financial donations; Act 4:34 “not a needy person among them”; Lev 15:4).

 

3. We must graciously accommodate the theological ignorance of those whose soteriology is right (1, [“going up to the Temple at the ninth hour” = The time of the evening sacrifice] w/17 “acted in ignorance” = Peter and John knew that the sacrifices of the Temple could not propitiate for sin. They however also knew that those attending the Temple who were ignorant of this –and more importantly of Jesus’s true identity and role in this respect, possessed the right soteriology [i.e., gain thru vows/covenant signs/faith and maintain through obedience to God’s Law or faithfulness is also required to be save]. Hence the reason for referring to them as “brethren”. In this light, consider 1Ti 1:12-14 = Paul was already a faithful member of the covenant community [already saved]. Paul made similar accommodations to the Jews in Act 21:20-26).

 

4. The mantle of authority (or power) given by Jesus to those pastors possessing the right gospel remains fully intact even when they possess certain beliefs which are wrong due to ignorance (1-10 = At the time that Peter exercises Jesus’s authority/power [“in the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene” = According to His authority/power], he ignorantly believes the gospel to only be available to Jews or Jewish proselytes [Act 10:1-28]; Mat 18:18 “whatever you bind…loose” [Grk., hosos = Any or all things in quantity or measure]).

 

5. God gives power and spiritual authority (“piety” [Grk., eusebia = spiritual authority] to the church’s anointed pastors as a means to:

5.1. glorifying Jesus since it is His power and authority they now possess (11-13a; Joh 14:13; Joh 20:21-23). POINT NOT TO MISS: when you resist the authority of the church’s leaders you are both resisting Jesus and robbing Him of His glory.

5.2. exposing those possessing hearts of rebellion against God’s authority (13b-15 = The Jews refused, rejected and killed [“disowned”] Jesus b/c they did not want to submit to His authority. God raised Him from the dead proving Jesus’s authority was divinely-appointed). POINT NOT TO MISS: When you buck the authority of Jesus (which now resides in His anointed pastors), you show yourself to be a rebel to God.

 

6. Loyal obedience to Jesus as our King can lead to more than just spiritual deliverance (16, “on the basis of faith in His name [a pledge of loyal submission to Jesus’s authority]…has given him this perfect health”; 1Co 11:30 = Many Christians get sick or suffer ill health bc they continue to pledge their loyalty to Jesus’s authority [which we do every time we partake of the LT – “for faithfulness of life”] yet live in sinful opposition to Him).

 

7. There is mercy for those whose rebellion is the product of ignorance and not stubbornness (17; 1Ti 1:13; Zec 7:8-13 = Stubbornness leads to wrath – not mercy [God being stubborn to us]. Hence the reason we need to determine whether the problem is moral or intellectual).

 

8. God knows how to take our ignorance and evil actions and use them to advance His Kingdom (13-18, “He has fulfilled” = God’s purposes were being accomplished even thru the wicked suffering inflicted upon Jesus by the Jews; Isa 53; Pro 16:4). POINTS NOT TO MISS: 1) free wills and a free future are not enough to keep God from perfectly accomplishing His plans – esp. in re: to His people (Rom 8:28).

2) possessing the proper biblical framework in re: to God and human responsibility, is essential to avoiding – or reading into passages like vv13-18, the error of determinism ([Exo 13:17; Isa 54:15; Jer 19:5] w/Eph 1:11 “works [Grk., energeo] = To give energy to, to operate – not determine/decree/fix – Act 17:26, 31 [Grk., horizo] = Some things – but not most things, have been determined by God – e.g., Jer 5:22).

 

9. There is no forgiveness of sins or blessing of salvation from Jesus for those who fail to cease in their practice of (known) sin and live in obedience to God’s commands (19, “repent and return [to loyalty to the Lord, to practicing His ways and righteousness– Act 11:21, 26:18; Jam 5:19-20; Isa 55:7 w/56:1; Jer 4:1-2]” = This is the principle of put off and put on [Eph 4:22-24; e.g., it is often people’s failure in the latter that keeps them from persevering; Other examples: dieting, unhealthy relationships – self programmed robots//*wb awkward and uncomfortable at first]; 26, “to bless you by [instrumental – how the blessing will take place] turning every one of you from your wicked ways.” = The blessing [of Jesus’s salvation] happens only where there is no more practice of sin – i.e., where [again] it has been replaced by the practice of righteousness [1Jo 3:7-10]).

 

10. Jesus will return when the Jews return to Jesus (19-25)[1] “in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things” = The return of the Jews to God thru becoming Christians (Rom 11:25-29), will lead to the return of Christ and times of refreshing (new heaven, new earth (Isa 66:18-22), which will also signify the restoration of the kingdom to Israel (1:6) and the eternal destruction of all people who do not bow the knee to Jesus (22-25 [Gen 22:18; Deu 18:15-19; 2Sa 7:8-17]; Isa 66:23-24)[2].

 

 

[1] “Christ’s coming is seen as in some sense dependent on Israel’s repentance.” – Ben Witherington (Acts)

[2] “If the Israelites would repent for a day, the son of David (Messiah) would come immediately” – 1st cent., Rabbi Eliezer ben Hyrcanus (p. Ta’an)