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LETS WORSHIP TOGETHER

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Friday, December 30 2011

Introduction:

Last week, we all saw and gained insight into the power of the fellowship of like-minded believers, having all things in common. Steadfastness and continuity became their watchword and constant practises. They just couldn't imagine a life without each other anymore. Though with different backgrounds (since some have just been added to the 120 that tarried in Jerusalem in Acts 2:1), they have become inseparably united in purpose, vision and zeal.

Today, the journey takes an interesting turn as we examine the very first physical manifestation of God's healing power in this book of study (".....Signs on the earth beneath" - Acts 2:19) that He has pre-ordained for this particular time in the life of the Apostles, at the particular place and the particular time in the life of the receiver!

Practical Application:

The book of Acts is a record of practising Christianity under the power of the Holy Spirit. It teaches believers how to live together in meaningful Christian fellowship, sharing freely with one another. Conversely, Acts also shows that Christians inevitably will have disagreements (As we will see in subsequent chapters), but that God gives wisdom and grace to settle differences in order to remove any impediment to the flow of His power through unity. Even though the early church had its share of strong personalities (Peter and John for example), there was still a willingness to listen and to submit to one another. Probably the most prominent characteristic of the early Christians was their spiritual power. They fasted and prayed fervently and their faith released miracle-working power of God.

In today's reading, we trust God by His grace for boldness to be able to do what Peter and John did at the Beautiful Gate. Remember, Jesus Christ (the Messiah) is (always) the same, yesterday, today, (yes) and forever (to the ages). Heb 13:8

Lessons and Wisdoms from the Lifestyle of the Apostles (Acts 3:1-10) & The Man at The Centre of This Verse

Enters Peter and John (Acts 3:1)

Last week, we read in Acts 2: 46 that the believers have developed a very strong habit of regularly assembling in the temple with united purpose. So, Peter and John were observing this culture and lifestyle of seeking His face in prayers and fellowship. Another lesson in this verse is that they were going at the hour of prayer. Little did Peter and John know that God has specially prepared the day for them. This prayer meeting was not going to be as usual. God is set to bring his word in Mark 16:17 to pass in their lives. Let's prologue John (1 John 1: 1-4) and Peter (Matt. 16:18, John 21: 3, 7, 15-17)

And The Man That God Created To Show Forth His Glory (Acts 3:2)

Great timing! This man, who has been crippled from birth was being carried along, who was laid each day at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful. The man in question had not walked for over 40 years (Acts 4:22) of his life! Knowing this informs us that he was a young lad when Jesus was born. It's amazing though that he never got his healing when the Lord walked through the face of the earth. God must have reserved him for this day for His works to be revealed in him (John 9:3). You know, that situation and mountain that has lingered thus far may be for His works to be revealed in you so that His Glory may be manifested through you! This man's state of health is the direct opposite of his location. This doesn't matter to God; after all, his state was going to finally agree with his location. Patience is key (James 1: 2-4)

And their Paths finally crossed........ (Acts 3:3)

So when he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple...... This man has been diligent in going to the Beautiful Gate. I can imagine the people who have been carrying this man to this gate. They must have been his friends, maybe family members. May have been a combination of both doing shifts between themselves. Same with Peter and John. If they have been lazy (Rom 12:11 NLT), they would have missed the opportunity to make history! (2 Tim 2:15).

His Experience Has Taught Him (Acts 3: 4-5)

Years of begging has taught the man to expect to get something! This man must have been tired of his pitiful situation and life at some point in time. He never knew that he has become a master in expecting to get something! This is key to his receiving his miracle. That is why James encourages us to consider it an opportunity for great joy when we go through troubles! (James 1:2b NLT)

They must have remembered (Acts 3:6)

Peter and John must have remembered the very words of Jesus in Mark 16:17 as soon as they saw the man. Remember, this is the very first miracle of its kind recorded in the book of Acts. Can you imagine us doing same in Clanbrassil? Peter (as usual) must have spoken with boldness. Gen 1: 1-3 comes to mind. He spoke light into the dark world of the man!

They Dared to Go Further (Acts 3:7)

Let me mention that the Book of Acts is otherwise called the Book of The Acts of The Holy Spirit. Everything was made possible by the power of the Holy Spirit. These believers have been filled and they continued to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Believing in the power and the anointing of the Holy Spirit, Peter took hold of the man's right hand with a firm grip and raised him up! By this Act of Faith in both the giver and receiver, immediately his feet and ankle became strong and steady!

Mission Accomplished (Acts 3:8-10)

He had never walked for over 40 years and can now do for the first time in his life. Can you imagine how happy this man would have been? He was not learning to walk, he was leaping!(Isaiah 35:3-6). He must have been doing his leaping in a very profound way so much that all the people saw him leaping and praising God!!!. This is exactly why this man has been healed (through the working of the Holy Spirit in the lives of Peter and John) at this time by the sovereign God. All the people recognised him. Can you imagine the multitude of people that witnessed this first hand? No one could doubt the miracle. It happened right there while people were by the Beautiful Gate! There must have been commotions everywhere. He has stayed begging at that spot too long for him not have been noticed! Our God is awesome. Through this single miracle, all the people gathered to hear Peter's preaching in the subsequent verses.

End of the beginning

Many opportunities like the one described above still abounds all around us. Little did Peter and John know that this was not going to be the "usual" prayer meeting. They have been diligent and consistent in what they were doing and God decided to honour their commitments. That service that you have been rendering selflessly that seems not to be noticed is someday going to be rewarded with the Mighty Acts of the Holy Spirit that nobody can deny. However, for this Acts to be experienced in our time, we need to move into the neighbourhood just like Peter and John (And the rest of the believers) did. They were merely doing what their Master did;

"The Word became flesh and blood, and moved into the neighbourhood...."John 1:14a (The Message)

The neighbourhood is where the opportunities abound. There are many lame men out there waiting for the earnest manifestation of the sons of God. Can God count on you?

 

Contributor: Leye Olayiwola

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 10:54 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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