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24th Oct

2016

Pastor’s Page – November 2016

Having set forth great evangelical truths in the first part of his sermon in chapter Acts Chapter 3, Peter appeals directly to his hearers on the basis of God’s great kindness to them. Peter is telling them that God’s blessings should result in a response from those who are the recipients of such blessings. He believes that this calls for action on their part. I would agree with Peter because I feel God’s blessings should bring about a response from God’s people. Great promises, great offers of blessings, phrased in Old Testament language are made dependent on the listeners’ repentance. (verses 19-21) God promises not only forgiveness but that times of refreshing will come to His people. (Verse 19)

Verse 21 tells us that this is coupled with the promise of the restitution of all things. These two expressions in the minds of Peter’s hearers could only mean the promised, longed-for Messianic kingdom. Peter is talking about God’s kingdom on earth with blessings for all people. When Jesus said the Kingdom of God was at hand, He meant that the joy of the Lord can be a part of our life right now. Peter is talking about what happens when we accept Jesus into our life and what will happen when Christ returns. His message for us today is that it is already our privilege to enjoy “times of refreshing . . . from the presence of the Lord.”

When was the last time you thanked the Lord for saving your soul? Peter would tell us to be thankful that our sins have been blotted out. This should bring about a response from all of us to praise and thank the Lord for all He has done in our life. God has promised that if we turn to Him, our sins will be forgiven and we shall be blessed. We read in Acts 3:26, “God having raised up his servant, sent him to you first, to bless you in turning every one of you from your wickedness.” The promise then and now is victorious living through the power of Jesus Christ. Peter was saying to his listeners that the prophecies regarding the Messiah have now been fulfilled before their eyes. God’s great generous offer is that if we turn to Him in repentance and faith, the whole guilty past will be cancelled out. Peter is telling his listeners that as children of the prophets all the honors and blessings have now come to rest upon them. They are living in the days of fulfillment.

Finally Peter reminds them of their rich national heritage as heirs of the “covenant which God gave to their fathers,” that is, with Abraham. Jesus, Abraham’s promised seed, has been in their very midst. Jesus the promised Messiah has fulfilled God’s promise. I think all of us need to be reminded from time to time what Jesus did for all of humanity. He died so that we can have eternal life. The world was lost in sin but Jesus willingly went to Calvary to die for all the sins of the world. Peter emphasizes that the covenant blessings are for all people. God sent Jesus to bless them with new covenant blessings, which Peter defines specifically as salvation from sin, turning everyone from iniquities.

The world God created was a perfect world until sin entered in but God did not give up on the human race. Jesus chose to come to earth and be the Savior of the world. God’s love for humanity is seen from Genesis to Revelation. The love of God is unquestionable. Thanksgiving is a time that we should give thanks for all of the blessings of God. Do you spend more time complaining about what you don’t have or praising God for what you have in life? We must remember that we are under the care of a loving God. God has promised to never leave us and He has a perfect plan for our lives. How wonderful are the familiar words of 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.” Never forget that God loves us and that His hand is upon our lives. As we prepare for Thanksgiving Day on November 25 th may this be a time that we pause and give thanks for the many blessings God has bestowed upon us.

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