By What Power and What Name?

Consider the question posed to Peter and John after they had been put in the holding pen for healing a lame man. The man leaped and praised God and Peter and John were arrested.  The world wants us to feel it’s a crime to serve God.

Acts 4:And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this? Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; 10 Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 11 This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. 12 Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. 13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. 14 And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.

This is Acts 4.  Pentecost was Acts 2.  Pentecost is 50 days after Easter making this a Pentecost Sunday.  God worked all the feasts as a testimony to the world.  The presence of God on Mount Sinai was so powerful that the mountain couldn’t even be touched while Moses was there.  We cannot look on a holy God.  We need help.  God provided redemption.  He paid the ransom when he died on the cross and arose for our justification.  Jesus ascended to heaven and told the Jews who followed him to gather and wait to be endued with power from on high.  God sent the Holy Spirit on Pentecost.  The devil may think he owns it all and that he will overcome but he’s never had power to take God off the throne.  The most foolish thing anyone can do is challenge God.

Now, a few months later, Peter and John were going to the temple and met a lame man at the Beautiful Gate who asked alms from them.  They told him they had no silver or gold but what they had they would give him.  They had Jesus.  The told him to get up and walk in the name of Jesus.  There is power in that name.  The man leaped up and praised God. Peter and John found themselves in front of the same group who railroaded Jesus and participated in his death sentence.  They stood where their Master had stood.  We don’t hear them whining around scared.  Peter jumped off the seat of do nothing after Jesus was crucified. He was standing.  Our job is not easy and gets harder.  It is the job of standing in the gap as an ambassador for God.

Everyone knew this lame man.  They saw him healed and standing with Peter and John.  The rulers knew it wasn’t a trick and wondered how to charge Peter and John.  They had to believe what they saw.  They knew the people would not like it if they did something to Peter and John.  People will take notice if you’ve been with the Lord.  Pete and John were asked by what name and what power they had done this. Are we as quick on the draw to testify for Jesus as Peter was?  Others must see something different in us in order to believe.  Peter told them it was through Jesus Christ of Nazareth. Their connection with Jesus gave them boldness to stand.  It was impossible for the man to walk without Jesus.  It is impossible for us without Jesus.  He helps us to stand when we’re called on.  The devil tells all sorts of lies to stop us but he is no match for Jesus.  If we’re willing to stand we’ll find treasure in heaven.  He’ll stand for us there if we stand for him now.

By what power?  By what name?  Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.  This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.  Peter didn’t stand for Jesus a few months before but this day he stood.  The devil will tell us we can’t stand.  Jesus stood alone for us so that when we stand before the same wicked bunch he can be with us.  If we find ourselves before the “Sanhedrin’s of this world” the same power, the same name—Jesus—will see us through.

Paul said when we done all just stand.  By his name and by his power.  That’s the answer.

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