Welcome to the POG Blog! In the reading today we get a sense of the affects of Easter on the followers of Jesus just months after the resurrection.
Acts 3 11 While the man held on to Peter and John, all the people were astonished and came running to them in the place called Solomon’s Colonnade. 12 When Peter saw this, he said to them: “Fellow Israelites, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? 13 The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go. 14 You disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked that a murderer be released to you. 15 You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. 16 By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.
So here we are probably within months of the resurrection, ascension and Pentecost and Peter and John have come upon a crippled man and healed him in the name of Jesus. Now the crowds have gathered and Peter seizes the opportunity to declare the message of Jesus – risen from the dead – to them.
I love the line, “Why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we made this man walk”! Peter is definitely in a different place than he was months before when he denied Jesus three times. He has embraced his Risen Lord, been filled with the Holy Spirit and now is no longer normal. The old normal is on display by the crowd – surprised that the man is healed and thinking that the explanation is somehow in the persons of Peter and John! Peter tells them that the risen Jesus is the source of this power – not he or John. The new reality is that the power of Jesus continues to work among people even though Jesus is not physically present. Jesus now works with power through His followers by the presence of His Spirit.
This is the new reality – the Exceptionally Alive reality - and Peter declares it. “You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. 16 By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus’ name and the faith that comes through him that has completely healed him, as you can all see.”
Today I get to live in the same life and power that Peter and John lived in. I have access to the same Father by means of the same Spirit in the name of the same Jesus.
I think I will have an Exceptionally Alive day today! Not by my power – Not by my strength! His!
What about you? How does all this sound to you today?