Be Amazed

Read Acts 3:11-16 - While he clung to Peter and John, all the people, utterly astounded, ran together to them in the portico called Solomon’s.  12 And when Peter saw it he addressed the people: “Men of Israel, why do you wonder at this, or why do you stare at us, as though by our own power or piety we have made him walk?  13 The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified his servant Jesus, whom you delivered over and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him.  14 But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you,  15 and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses.  16 And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all.

Luke 4:36 - And they were all amazed and said to one another, “What is this word? For with authority and power he commands the unclean spirits, and they come out!”

     The people at the temple knew this man, the one who had to be carried to the temple every day in order to beg for alms. They saw him begging, day in and day out as they gathered for their prayer times at the temple. There was no doubt that this man was lame. He couldn’t walk on his own, yet they witnessed the miracle with their own eyes. The latter of verse nine in chapter three says, “And they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.” The word ‘wonder' here is the same word that we find in Acts 3:11 where it says they were “utterly astounded” (ESV) or “full of amazement” (NASB.) The root of both words in the original Greek is the word, thambos, which means “to render immoveable; to dumbfound; astonishment, awe.” The repetition in these two verses of how awe-struck the people were is to emphasize how this miracle affected the people who witnessed it. 

     And Peter took advantage…but not for his own attention or glorification. He took advantage of the opportunity to tell all of these people about Jesus. He first pointed to the God they all worship, the God who revealed Himself to Moses at the burning bush as “I Am.” He connected Jesus to the prophecies of old and reminded the people that they were ancestors of a promise. Peter brought them the Good News - that faith in the name of Jesus and through the power of the risen Christ, represented by his name, is what has healed the man. Belief in the person and the power of Jesus, not any kind of magic or personal power, has made the lame man well.

When was the last time you were ‘full of amazement’ at something that God did in your life or in the life of someone you know? Spend some time remembering - and worshipping and thanking the God of the universe for his miraculous intervention.

When given the opportunity to give glory to God, Peter took it. Think back to the last time that you had an opportunity to give God glory. Did you seize the opportunity, or did you choose to keep the praise for yourself? 

How can you acknowledge the presence of Almighty God in your life every day and give Him glory?