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Solomon’s Porch (Acts 3:11-26)

April 9, 2014

Reflecting on the Passage:
Here at East Point Church, we have begun a new sermon series entitled “Acts: The Spirit and the Church in the World“. This week’s sermon emphasizes the importance of preaching Christ above all others. Elder Duncanson illustrates the implications of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The focus of this sermon is on marveling at doctrine of concurrency, which states God is sovereign in all things even in the decisions of human beings, while holding them accountable for their actions.

The Sovereignty of God

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While he clung to Peter and John, all the people, utterly astounded, ran together to them in the portico called Solomon’s. And when Peter saw it he addressed the people: “Men of Israel, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we have made him walk? The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified his servant Jesus, whom you delivered over and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him (Acts 3:11-13; ESV).”

Instead of making a name for himself, Peter makes the name of Christ known. Peter understood this miraculous healing of the lame man was great, but the miracle served as a sign. Elder Duncanson explains that a sign points to a greater reality than the sign. The greater reality that this sign pointed to was the Lord Jesus Christ. Thus, Peter used this opportunity to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which included indicting these men for committing the greatest sin in history, crucifying Christ.

Human Responsibility

But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all (Acts 3:14-16; ESV).”

Peter’s indictment or rebuke for their sin was essential to preaching the gospel message. These men were familiar with the Old Testament and they knew the law of God. However, they did not realize they were accessories to the murder of Jesus Christ. They had killed Jesus — the Son of God, the Holy and Righteous One, and the Author of Life. Yet Peter did not leave them hopeless to deal with their sin. No, Peter faithfully points them to this same Jesus, in whose name the lame man was healed, and in whom they could receive forgiveness even for this heinous sin.

The Proper Response

And now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago (Acts 3:17-21; ESV).”

Here we see why the Gospel is such good news. Even though these men were guilty, they were offered repentance and forgiveness of sin. Peter understood he too was just as guilty as these men for his abandonment and denial of Jesus Christ, in His greatest hour of temptation (Matt. 26:69-75; Mark 14:66-72; Luke 22:54-62; John 18:15-18). Although Christ knew that Peter was the perfect candidate to testify of the power of God, by showing that He had the power to restore and redeem Peter (cf. Luke 22:31-32). Therefore, Peter presented them with their sin, which was the bad news, in order that he might offer them better news, the Hope of humanity, Jesus Christ. The proper response to the gospel is repentance and faith.

Do you continue to deny Jesus Christ?

We deny Christ in our lives, even as Christians, when we sin and push Him to the side for our desires. When you understand the mercy of God, the good news of Jesus Christ should cause you to marvel. You not only get the forgiveness of sin, but you get Christ.

Do you realize your sin put Jesus on that cross at Calvary? How will you respond today? The proper response is see yourself as guilty before God, while also realizing Christ is alive and able to forgive. Repent and believe in Him who is the Author of Life.

Listen to this week’s full sermon for free.

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