The Beginning of the Last Days: Acts 2 (4)
Pray Psalm 2.7-10
“I will declare the decree:
The LORD has said to Me,
‘You are My Son,
Today I have begotten You.
Ask of Me, and I will give You
The nations for Your inheritance,
And the ends of the earth for Your possession.
You shall break them with a rod of iron;
You shall dash them to pieces like a potter’s vessel.’”
Now therefore, be wise, O kings;
Be instructed, you judges of the earth.
Sing Psalm 2.7-10
(Agincourt Hymn: O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High!)
Proclaim the message far and wide, that God has exalted the Crucified!
From heav’n He sent us His only Son, Who has for us salvation won!
To Christ the Lord be given all who humbly embrace Him and on Him call.
Be wise, be warned: His judgment comes to break the prideful, sinful ones.
Read Acts 2.1-28; meditate on Acts 2.22-28.
1. What did God accomplish by raising Jesus from the dead?
2. How did those who murdered Jesus fit in God’s plan?
Peter continues his explanation of the events of that first Pentecost morning. It is as the Old Testament says: These are the last days, the Spirit is upon us, and we His servants and witnesses proclaim the Kingdom because God has raised His Holy One from the dead.
We note Peter’s emphasis on the historicity of the events of the Gospel – Jesus’ works and wonders, His passion, and His resurrection. This account is neither myth nor delusion: All this was attested to by the apostles and known to those present.
God is sovereign in all aspects of the work of the Gospel, sending and empowering Jesus (“Holy One” v. 27), ordering the events of wicked men according to His Word, raising His Messiah from the dead, overcoming the pangs of death (a striking image: death giving birth to life), and now sending His Kingdom to the world. In that Kingdom, He has commissioned His Spirit-filled servants to proclaim the Good News (Acts 1.8). The ongoing work of Christ is underway with a vengeance.
The walls of Jericho fell with a mighty shout. The walls of men’s hearts were about to fall under the simple proclamation of an undeniable truth: Jesus Christ is risen from the dead, and He is Lord! We are privileged to be entrusted with this mighty Word, like the apostles and first believers.
Treasures Old and New: Matthew 13.52; Psalm 119.162
All the people present at Pentecost knew about Jesus. They had either seen first-hand His miracles, wonders, and signs; or they had heard about them. “…as you yourselves also know” (Acts 2.22).
Peter could speak to them from the vantage point of their knowledge of Jesus.
In our day, it seems as if people no longer know about Jesus. But to believe that we would be mistaken. Paul wrote in Romans 1. 18-21, “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.”
God in His mercy and grace, through the Holy Spirit’s power, sent someone to tell us the wonderful works of God. And we, in turn, have been sent to do the same. “Remember that the people with whom you are dealing either already have the salvation of Christ, and should be encouraged in it, or they are susceptible to being saved, and need to be led toward Him.” (see Crosfigell for 20 January 2022, T. M. Moore)
We daily see the miracles, wonders, and signs that God has wrought when we read His Word.
We see His grace and love in our own lives, and experience His mercy continually.
We see His majesty and glory in the created heavens and earth. “There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard. Their sound has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world” (Ps. 19.1-4) We have an abundance of good to tell our world about.
We have the very same Good Word to share in our own Personal Mission Field, that the angel shared with the shepherds: “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord” (Lk. 2.10, 11).
A Sovereign God planned this Gospel for people from the very beginning.
“For God so loved the world…” (Jn. 3.16)
1. What is the Gospel? That is, what is the Good News about Jesus and His Kingdom?
2. Have you mapped out your Personal Mission Field? Are you working it daily?
3. Does it encourage you to know that the people you know already know God? Explain.
His death is considered as God’s act; and of wonderful grace and wisdom. Thus Divine justice must be satisfied, God and man brought together again, and Christ himself glorified, according to an eternal counsel, which could not be altered. And as the people’s act; in them it was an act of awful sin and folly. Christ’s resurrection did away the reproach of his death; Peter speaks largely upon this. Christ was God’s Holy One, sanctified and set apart to his service in the work of redemption. Matthew Henry (1662-1714), Commentary on Acts 2.22-28
Pray Psalm 2.11, 12.
Ask the Lord to give you an opportunity today to encourage fellow believers in their walk with and work for Him, and to talk with an unbeliever about Jesus.
Sing Psalm 2.11, 12
(Agincourt Hymn: O Love, How Deep, How Broad, How High!)
Rejoice with fear in Jesus’ grace, and worship before His exalted face!
Beware His anger and judgment grim: How blessed are all who rest in Him!
T. M. and Susie Moore
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Except as indicated, all Scriptures are taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved. For sources of all quotations, see the weekly PDF of this study. All psalms for singing are from The Ailbe Psalter (Williston: Waxed Tablet Publications, 2006), available by clicking here.