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Acts Devotionals

The Ingredients of the Gospel

I would have loved to be present in Jerusalem on that Pentecost Day as Peter Proclaimed the Glorious Gospel of Pardon for sin through the precious Blood Offering of Jesus Christ. His style and passion must have been a great example for aspiring preachers. He loved the Lord Jesus and he loved the power of the Life Saving Gospel. The apostle Paul put it slightly differently, yet captured the same love and passion as he wrote:

Ro 1:16 I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.

The Kingdom Building Power the Holy Spirit gives (Acts 1:v8), takes the weak, inferior and introverted, giving utterance, preventing the speaker from being ashamed of Jesus and His Gospel because it is the power of God to save any person who turns in repentance and faith. As we return to Peters Proclamation at Pentecost we observe …

1) His confidence in what he is preaching. He says

Ac 2:29 “Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. 30 But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne.”

He believed what he preached, not just because he was inspired by the Holy Spirit but because he knew what he was preaching was truth, truth he believed in. This is what we need in our day and age. We need preachers who believe what they are dishing out to their people. If they don’t, how will the people ever believe what they preach if they don’t believe what they preach? So what did Peter believe?

(a) That king David of old died and was buried and his grave was available for all these “men of Israel” to see. The tomb contained his body. He might have been a patriarch and he might have been Israel’s greatest king and he might have been their most decorated military general and he certainly was their noted poet and singer … but he was not the Messiah God promised! How do we know this? His mortal remains were still in that tomb!

(b) That king David was promised by God on oath that He would install one of his descendant on his throne.

(i) In poetic form David prophesied this in Psalm 110 which Peter quotes from (verse 34ff).

(ii) Although there were a few good kings from David’s blood line, none matched the qualifications of Messiah.

(iii) From a human perspective, both Mary and Joseph descended from David’s blood line. (See Mat 1 for Joseph’s line and Luke 4 for Mary’s line).

(iv) Jesus fits all the requirements to sit upon David’s throne. (v0) We need to be careful here though. David’s throne that Messiah would be seated upon would not be an earthly throne. The throne means reign … and Jesus’ reign over His Kingdom that the apostles and us build for Him is a spiritual, heavenly and eternal Kingdom. Kingdom means reign and reign means throne.

2) David “saw” the Messiah’s Resurrection

Ac 2:31 Seeing what was ahead, he spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. 32 God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact.

How David was promised and how he saw into the future we cannot say. Spiritual matters relating to Messiah were mysterious as they were conveyed to the prophets to “foretell” the future. However, to David the Resurrection of Jesus was crystal clear, so much so that he could write in Psalm 16:

Ps 16:10 because you will not abandon me to the grave, nor will you let your Holy One see decay

which Peter quotes in verse 31. Peter wants his hearers to grasp that the great king David died, was buried and is still buried … although decayed … but God raised “this” Jesus to life. God would not and could not permit His Rescue Mission to Earth for the benefit of His elect to fail. It is so wonderful how God’s precision in planning and fulfilment was as successful as God wanted it to be. How can anyone, with a complete Bible deny prophesies about Messiah’s birth, ministry, death, resurrection and ascension … and yet they do!

3) David was a type … Jesus is the reality. David was an earthly sovereign, Jesus is the heavenly sovereign. David’s kingdom was earthly, Jesus’ Kingdom is heavenly. David was a man, Jesus is God. Who David was and what he did pointed to Jesus, the Messiah, not of Israel but of all the elect of God. Peter uses David to illustrate Jesus’ resurrection and return to glory. He is not dead in a tomb. He is alive and reigning in glory!

Ac 2:33 Exalted to the right hand of God

Peter tells the hearers exactly where Jesus is. He is in heaven, seated upon the power seat of glory from where He reigns with all authority. He came from there, was incarnate of the virgin, became man, and executed three years of ministry before surrendering as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, is crucified, buried and on the third day rises from the dead and forty days later returns to heaven. As miraculous as His incarnation was, so is His ascension. It is to this risen and ascended Jesus that every tongue with confess Him Lord, to the Glory of the Father.

4) The faithfulness of Jesus … he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. Jesus received the promised Holy Spirit from the Father because He asked the Father for another one like Him to be with His apostles and followers until His return to earth for Judgment.

Jn 14:16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.

As mentioned before … what was seen at Pentecost was the Spirit of God at work … but God being triune … John 14:19 tells us that Jesus returned by the Promised Holy Spirit.

5) The onlookers who queried the phenomena that took place … had asked

Ac 2:12 “What does this mean?”

By now, Peter has proven to these men of Israel that what is happening is all about authenticating Jesus as Messiah to the nation. He will develop his sermon more, by that’s for tomorrow. Are you able to deny the veracity of the Gospel? Could you reject Peter’s use of Old Testament Scriptures to authenticate Jesus’ Gospel record? Do you believe in Jesus as sovereignly Lord and King of His Kingdom? Are you part of His Kingdom?

Father, although we are not through Peter’s sermon, give us total clarity in our hearts as to the Gospel’s ingredients. May the Spirit write them indelibly on our hearts. Amen.

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