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The Book of Acts, lessons, commentary and study guide from the church of Christ


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Bobby Stafford Acts 3:1-11 (Lesson 12)     

The Book of Acts


Acts 3:1-11

“The Healing of the Lame Man”  (Verses 1-10)

Verse 1  Acts 3:1 “Now Peter and John went up together to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour.”  NKJV

The apostles had been performing numerous miracles and now one of those is recorded.  (Acts 2:43)  “Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.”  NKJV  The possible reason for this is the effect it had on the Jewish leaders.  The prophesied persecution is about to begin.  (John 15:20) “Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater that his master.’  If they persecuted Me, they will also persecute you.  If they kept My word, they will keep yours also.”  NKJV  The early church met daily in the temple area because of the large amount of room available.  Jews observed three times for prayer:  9:00 a.m., 3:00 p.m., and sunset.  Peter and John went to this area because many Jewish men and women would be there.  This gave them an excellent opportunity to teach.

Verses 2-3  Acts 3:2-3 “And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms from those who entered the temple; who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms.”  NKJV

They encountered a beggar who was lame from birth.  Beggars would be placed in areas of high human traffic like the temple area.  He was placed by the gate called “Beautiful.”  The gate into the Court of the women was considered beautiful because it was fifteen feet tall and made of Corinthian bronze.  Begging was his only means of support.

Verses 4-6  Acts 3:4-6 “And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, ‘Look at us.’  So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them.  Then Peter said, ‘Silver and gold  I do not have, but what I do have I give you; In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”  NKJV

(Luke 10:17) “Then the seventy returned with joy, saying, ‘Lord, even the demons are subject to us in Your name.” 

(Matthew 10:1, 8) “And when He had called His twelve disciples to Him, He gave then power over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease.  8Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons.  Freely you have received, freely give.”  NKJV

Peter called on Jesus’ power and authority to heal the lame man.  There was no indication that the lame man had any faith.  In the New Testament, the one with the power to heal had to have faith but not the one being healed.  (Mark 16:17-18) “And these signs will follow those who believe:  In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”  NKJV

Verse 7  Acts 3:7 “And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.”  NKJV

Instantly the man was healed.  God built up the leg muscles and tendons, restored dead nerves, and rebuilt joints – all in a moment!

Verse 8  Acts 3:8 “So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them – walking, leaping, and praising God.”  NKJV

This man had never learned to walk; but the power of God performed another miracle.  No training or therapy was needed.  He began praising God.  (Acts 4:16) “Saying, 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.”  NKJV  “God has two dwellings: one in heaven and the other in a thankful heart”  Isaac Walton  (James 1:17) “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.”  NKJV 

Verses 9-10  Acts 3:9-10 “And all the people saw him walking and praising God.  Then they knew that it was he who sat begging alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.”  NKJV

This must have been quite a scene.  The beggar, who had been lame for years, was leaping up and down for joy.

Verse 11  Acts 3:11 “Now as the lame man who was healed held on to Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch which is called Solomon’s, greatly amazed.”  NKJV

He was clinging to Peter and John as large numbers of people came running to them, no doubt with lots of questions.  The place was Solomon’s Portico or Colonnade.  It was located on the inside of the east wall of the Court of the Gentiles and was about 600 feet long and 60 feet deep.  It had two rows of  27-foot columns and was covered with a roof of cedar.

Lessons to Be Learned

1.  Stewardship  We may not have silver and gold, but all of us have something that can be used in the service of God – time, energy, abilities.  God just asks us to use what we have and not waste it.  Stewardship involves responsibility and management.  This attitude is seen in Romans 12:3-8.  We will be judged based upon our wise use of our resources, talents, and opportunities.  (Matthew 25:14-30, 41-46)  Each of us has accountability to God.  (Luke 16:1-2) “He also said to His disciples: ‘There was a certain rich man who had a steward; and an accusation was brought to him that this man was wasting his goods.  So he called him and said to him, ‘What is this I hear about you?  Gove an account of your stewardship, for you can no longer be steward,”  NKJV 

2.  The Purpose of Miracles

·  Purpose – To confirm and verify the truth of the gospel  (Mark 16:20) “And they went out and preached everywhere, the Lord working with them and confirming the word through the accompanying signs.  Amen.”  NKJV  The miracles supported with evidence that the message was from God.  (Hebrews 2:3-4) “how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed to us by those who heard Him, God also bearing witness both with signs and wonders, with various miracles, and gifts of the Holy Spirit, according to His own will?”  NKJV  These miracles once written down were to help produce faith in those that read.  (John 20:30-31) “And truly Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name.”  NKJV

·  End – In a section of Scripture dealing with miraculous gifts, Paul said the following:  I Corinthians 13:8-10. “Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.  For we know in part and we prophesy in part.  But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away.” NKJV

God’s Word was not revealed all at once, but little by little.  During this time, miracles were necessary.  But when the revelation was completely finished [by the end of the 1st Century], they were no longer needed – the perfect complete had come.  This is also pictured in Ephesians 4:8-13.  The unity of the faith refers to the entire gospel.  The miracles were only to last until “the faith” was completed. 

Bobby Stafford  May 31, 2015 [Evening]  Acts:  Lesson 12  Acts 3:1-11

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