Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Gospel According to Acts 4

Jesus, Our Leader and Savior (Acts. 5.27-32)

- The apostles are questioned before the council (vv.27, 28).
- Peter declares his faithfulness to God rather than men (v.29).
- Although these men put Jesus to death God has raised him to his right hand. Jesus is identified as Leader and Savior and Israel is now given the opportunity to repent to receive the forgiveness of sins (vv. 30, 31).
- Both the apostles and the Holy Spirit are witnesses to these things. The Holy Spirit is given to those who obey God’s message of the gospel (v. 32).

This section of Acts, again, confirms that the apostolic proclamation of the gospel centers on the fact that God raised Jesus after he was killed and exalted him to his right hand. Jesus is also identified as Leader and Savior. With his resurrection he leads his people into the new age. He is the one man who was raised in the middle of history before the general resurrection of all God’s people. He is also the Savior, delivering his people from this present evil age through the forgiveness of sins. Repentance is offered because the gospel is a message ‘about Christ’ that is ‘for us’ (although in this case it should be noted that the offer is given specifically to Israel). The apostles and the Holy Spirit are witnesses to all that has happened to Jesus. Those who obey the message of the gospel will receive the Holy Spirit; the gift of the new age.

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