Bible Discussion — Acts 3-4

August 21, 2008, 9:30 am; posted by
Filed under Bible, Connie, David, Josh J, Steve  | No Comments

This week, Bweinh.com moves on to the next two chapters of Acts.

PREVIOUS DISCUSSIONS:
Genesis: 1-4 | 5-9 | 10-14 | 15-18 | 19-22 | 23-26
27-29 | 30-32 | 33-36 | 37-39 | 40-43 | 44-46 | 47-50
Exodus: 1-4 | 5-8 | 9-11 | 12-14 | 15-18
19-22 | 23-26 | 27-30 | 31-34 | 35-40
Romans: Ch. 1 | Ch. 2 | Ch. 3 | Ch. 4 | Ch. 5 | Ch. 6 | Ch. 7 | Ch. 8 (I)
Ch. 8 (II) | Ch. 9 | Ch. 10 | Ch. 11 | Ch. 12 | Ch. 13 | Ch. 14 | Ch. 15-16
Luke: 1:1-38 | 1:39-2:40 | 2:41-3:38 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10
11 | 12 | 13 | 14-15 | 16-17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24
Esther: 1-2 | 3-5 | 6-8 | 9-10
Acts: 1 | 2

 
INTRODUCTION:
David:
God pours out His Holy Spirit, and a “notable miracle” happens. By the end of chapter 4, the disciples were asking for miracles to continue to accompany the preaching of the Gospel to the unsaved world as signs and wonders.

Too many Christians today doubt that miracles occur — because they want to use them to entertain the church. That is not what signs and wonders were designed for. Go out and preach to the lost, begin to pray for miracles, and I guarantee you will see them.

 
SOMETHING YOU’D NEVER NOTICED BEFORE:
Steve:
It was after Peter’s sermon that the rulers, elders, and teachers came to realize that he and John were “unschooled, ordinary men.” Guess they didn’t like the message.

Connie:
Either the 5000 conversions came as Peter and John were being arrested, or the passage mentions that they were arrested, and then throws in the 5000 conversions as an afterthought. The Sadducees and government officials were lucky those 5000 didn’t turn on them when they took Peter and John away.

 
BEST BAND NAME FROM THE PASSAGE:
Josh: Unschooled
David: Manifest
Steve: Annas and the Sanhedrin
Connie: Nation’s Rage

 
STORY IT REMINDS YOU OF:
Josh:
The scene at the beginning of Trading Places when Eddie Murphy is a hustler, begging by pretending to be blind and crippled. The police come over and lift him up and he is miraculously healed.

David:
Thinking about miracles being used as signs and wonders reminds me a Satanist who approached me with a prayer request while I was ministering at the jail. I told him the only way I would pray is if we called the whole cell block together, explained what was happening, and then prayed aloud to Jesus. He agreed, we did it, and God answered his prayer. As agreed, he gave his heart to Jesus and removed all the Satanic symbols from the walls of his cell.

 
WHERE IS JESUS IN THIS PASSAGE?:
David:
Fulfilling the 2nd Psalm in 4:24-30.

Connie:
The chief Cornerstone.

Steve:
In 4:13, part of the high priest’s explanation of how the uneducated duo of Peter and John could have performed such a miraculous healing. Obviously they remembered some of Christ’s own work from a few weeks back.

 
DEEP THEOLOGICAL MEANING:
Josh:
” ‘What shall we do to these men? For, indeed, that a notable miracle has been done through them is evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. But so that it spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that from now on they speak to no man in this name.’ ”

There are those who are lost because they do not recognize the truth. But far worse, and completely lost of their own choice, are those who see the truth plainly and reject it.

David:
God is fulfilling 1,500 years of prophecy and birthing His church.

 
RANDOM THOUGHT:
Josh:
I wonder who carried that guy to the gate to beg every day.

Connie:
I love the prayer for boldness in 4:24-30. Gotta get me some of that.

David:
The Jews admitted that a genuine, certifiable miracle was done, yet they still opposed the disciples. Did they not see the danger in that?

 
VERSE TO REMEMBER:
David:
3:19 — “Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord.”

Connie; Steve; Josh:
4:12 — “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

 
PORTION YOU WOULD MOST LIKE EXPLAINED IN HEAVEN:
Steve:
It’s a consistent theme; I want to know what happened after the narrative ends and the characters return to their normal lives, unrecorded in Biblical history. How did that man, over 40 and crippled from birth, adjust to life with working legs? How long did it take before he took them for granted?

 
LESSON TO TAKE AWAY/GENERAL RESPONSE:
David:
A great lesson here is in the way the disciples lived at the start: none of them viewing anything they owned as their own, all giving everything they possessed to care for each other.

People who long for this today overlook the fact that we still do it when someone has a need — by taking up a love offering, bringing a meal, or giving them a car or home. I see this principle alive and working in the body of Christ all the time. Our church spent last Saturday drywalling a kitchen for one of our men who was hurt in a motorcycle accident.

Josh:
“But Peter and John answered and said to them, ”˜Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.\’”

Peter and John rightly recognized the threats of the Sanhedrin as hollow, and not because they had the support of the people, but because they were there under God\’s authority.

“So we may boldly say:
‘The LORD is my helper;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?’ ” (Hebrews 13:6)

How often do we give in to much subtler pressure, or even to apathy?

Connie:
Even though they were forbidden by the authorities to use the name of Jesus as a condition of their release, Peter and John immediately answered, in 4:20, that they could not help but speak the things they had seen and heard.

They were released anyway, and immediately prayed for more boldness. Apparently pleased, God filled them with such a strong manifestation that even the building shakes. Finally, they asked God to look on their enemy’s threats and answer them; a simple request that received an awesome answer from an awesome God.

 
CONCLUSION:
David:
Did you notice what Barnabas did in the last two verses of chapter 4? Unfortunately for Ananias and Sapphira, they did — and probably also noticed the attention that it brought him.


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