“Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer. Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you –even Jesus. He must remain in heaven until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. For Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from among his people.’ (Acts 3:17-23)
As Peter previously demonstrated, an evangelistic call matches the good news of Christ with the bad news of the sin that separates us from God. The sign of the healed beggar alone should have driven people to their knees right? Would it do so today? The challenge that we face is that people did not and still do not see themselves as in need of salvation. Our modern culture lives by the thought that ‘I’m okay, you’re okay.’ If that were true in the perspective of God’s economy there would never have been a Jesus. But we’re not okay, are we? We are sin driven, sin guided, and we live in a sinful culture. Will pastors preach that this week?
We must be willing to suffer the slings and arrows of pointing out the sad truth to people, even if the consequences of doing so are dire. When Peter voiced these words the people of Israel were in no mood to be confronted with the truth. If the realization of what they had done set in, the meaningless nature of their tiny sacrifices would have fell them like a tree. The cultural facts however, should never prevent us from speaking the truth. Sacrifice is to be a key component of our nature. How’re you doing?