TEXT: Acts 3:1-10
1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.
2 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 of them that entered into the temple;
3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms.
4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us.
5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.
6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.
8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.
9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God:
10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.
——- PRAYER ——-
We are in a series of messages titled “Praying Through the Bible: A Series on Every Passage and Verse Regarding Prayer in the Bible.” The purpose of this series is to encourage and motivate you to pray to the God of the Bible. We highlighted each of these over 500 verses and passages in the Prayer Motivator Devotional Bible. So far, we have completed 206 messages in this series.
This is message #207 titled, Opportunities for Ministry On the Pathway of Prayer, Part 3
Today, we return to the scene at the Beautiful Gate outside the Temple in Jerusalem. A great change has taken place since the last time we stopped by. Before, there was a lame man sitting at the Beautiful Gate begging Peter and John for money to survive. But instead of giving him survival money, Peter and John — who were on their way to pray in the temple — performed a miracle in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth that radically changed the lame man’s life. He was lame before, but now he is walking.
The Bible informs us that, not only was he walking, but he was leaping, dancing, and praising God. This man was part of the fulfillment of a prophecy by Isaiah who said that, in the day of the Messiah, “the lame will leap like a deer.” Perhaps, the most important part of the man’s reaction is found in verse 8 where it says he “entered with [Peter and John] into the temple.” This man did not do like so many people do today: they stay close to God and close to the church when they need something. But, as soon as they get what they want, they leave God behind. Instead of running to God, they run away from God on their newly healed legs.
But the lame man is not the only one who is impacted by the miracle worked by Christ through His disciples. The Bible says, “And all the people saw him walking and praising God: And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.” William J. Larkin wrote that “all the people who had known the man in his previous condition became witnesses to the miracle’s authenticity. More than that, they were filled with wonder — awe felt in the presence of divine activity. They were also filled with amazement — the state of being lifted out of one’s habitual life by encountering the power of God.”
But, feeling amazement and wonder at this miracle would do nothing for the other Jews standing around. God had not set up this situation just so the people could be wowed by the miraculous recovery of the lame man. God’s real plan was to give Peter and John an audience so they could preach the Gospel at that very moment. That is what we see in verse 11. The Bible says that “all the people ran together unto” Peter and John. “And when Peter saw it — he recognized the evangelistic opportunity — he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk? The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath glorified his Son Jesus…”
Peter goes on to preach to the Jews the Gospel of Christ. When Peter and John set out that day to pray, they were not looking to carry out an evangelistic crusade on the steps of the Temple. But that is what God had in mind. Because Peter and John were in tune with God, they were able to respond to the situation that God had placed before them. They took the opportunity to preach Jesus to lost sinners who needed salvation.
Someone once said, “We must make a difference between plans that are godly, and plans that are God’s.” You may have set out to do something that is godly, but God will set you up to do something else that’s for God. As Christians, we must be in tune with Him at all times. The main way that we can do that is through prayer. One Puritan thinker said, “God did not give us a list telling us what to do and when to do it. God is more mysterious than that. Instead of a list, He gave us prayer.” Prayer is the way we stay in communication with Him. Prayer is the way we receive instructions from Him. Prayer is the way we recognize when He is placing an opportunity for ministry right in front of us.
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Now, if you are with us today, and you do not know the Lord Jesus Christ as your Saviour, your first prayer needs to be what we call the Sinner’s Prayer. First, please understand that you are a sinner, just as I am, and that you have broken God’s laws. The Bible says in Romans 3:23: “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.”
Second, accept the fact that there is a penalty for sin. The Bible states in Romans 6:23: “For the wages of sin is death…”
Third, accept the fact that you are on the road to hell. Jesus Christ said in Matthew 10:28: “And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell.” Also, the Bible states in Revelation 21:8: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”
Now this is bad news, but here’s the good news. Jesus Christ said in John 3:16: “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
Just believe in your heart that Jesus Christ died for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead by the power of God for you so that you can live eternally with Him. Pray and ask Him to come into your heart today, and He will.
Romans 10:9 & 13 says, “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved… For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”
If you believe that Jesus Christ died on the cross for your sins, was buried, and rose from the dead, and you want to trust Him for your salvation today, please pray with me this simple prayer: Holy Father God, I realize that I am a sinner and that I have done some bad things in my life. For Jesus Christ sake, please forgive me of my sins. I now believe with all of my heart that Jesus Christ died for me, was buried, and rose again. Lord Jesus, please come into my heart and save my soul and change my life today. Amen.
If you just trusted Jesus Christ as your Saviour, and you prayed that prayer and meant it from your heart, I declare to you that based upon the Word of God, you are now saved from Hell and you are on your way to Heaven. Welcome to the family of God! Congratulations on trusting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Saviour. You have done the most important thing in life. For more information to help you grow in your newfound faith in Christ, go to Gospel Light Society.com and read “What To Do After You Enter Through the Door”. Jesus Christ said in John 10:9, “I am the door, by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
God loves you. We love you. And may God bless you.
Daniel Whyte III has spoken in meetings across the United States and in over twenty-five foreign countries. He is the author of over forty books including the Essence Magazine, Dallas Morning News, and Amazon.com national bestseller, Letters to Young Black Men. He is also the president of Gospel Light Society International, a worldwide evangelistic ministry that reaches thousands with the Gospel each week, as well as president of Torch Ministries International, a Christian literature ministry.
He is heard by thousands each week on his radio broadcasts/podcasts, which include: The Prayer Motivator Devotional, The Prayer Motivator Minute, as well as Gospel Light Minute X, the Gospel Light Minute, the Sunday Evening Evangelistic Message, the Prophet Daniel’s Report, the Second Coming Watch Update and the Soul-Winning Motivator, among others.
He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theology from Bethany Divinity College, a Bachelor’s degree in Religion from Texas Wesleyan University, a Master’s degree in Religion, a Master of Divinity degree, and a Master of Theology degree from Liberty University’s Rawlings School of Divinity (formerly Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary). He is currently a candidate for the Doctor of Ministry degree.
He has been married to the former Meriqua Althea Dixon, of Christiana, Jamaica since 1987. God has blessed their union with seven children.