SPOKEN PRAYER: Out loud, pray for God to speak to you through your reading. Praise God for giving us His Word. Ask the Spirit to help you read with faith, and to live out what you hear from God through the passage.
What a Difference!
by Dave Mann
What a difference! A few weeks before the events of this passage, Peter was a braggart, claiming that he would never abandon Jesus. It was about Peter and his courage.
A few hours later, he ran away and abandoned Jesus in the garden. But he slunk back to being somewhat close to Jesus. Yet, he denied him three times with an oath; he did not even know the man. He wept at his failure. It was about Peter and his hypocrisy.
Even after the resurrection, he was afraid for his life (with the other disciples) and hid behind locked doors for fear that Jesus’ enemies would do the same to him as they had done to Jesus. It was still all about Peter and his personal safety.
But then, Jesus brings the three-fold restoration – yesterday’s text – to undo Peter’s three-fold denial (John 21:14-25).
Then the power of the Holy Spirit is given (Acts 2). Peter and everyone in the upper room were empowered to take the good news of Christ’s death and resurrection to the ends of the earth.
Now in Acts 3, Peter and John are walking in full view in the temple courts. No fear. They see a lame man and they do what Jesus would do—they pray for healing. More than healing, they proclaim the power of Jesus to all. “It’s all about Jesus. It’s not about us!”
Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk?
The God of our fathers has glorified his servant Jesus.
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.
When the focus of our concern and purpose in life is about ourselves, fear of failure is already knocking at the door. Why? Because we are not strong enough to bear the weight of ultimate purpose.
But when our focus in life shifts from being about ourselves to being about Jesus, there is a remarkable change. Jesus, in his suffering, death, and resurrection – with the empowerment of the Holy Spirit – has demonstrated that he can bear the load of ultimate meaning. What a difference!
Lord Jesus, forgive me when I think it’s all about me. It’s all about you. Glory to the name of Jesus! Amen