If you want a million dollars or anything materialistic, I don’t have it. But I do have one thing, and it’s what Peter and John gave to a lame man.
Acts 3:1 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. 2 And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; 3 Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. 4 And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. 5 And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. 6 Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk. 7 And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. 8 And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God: 10 And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him. 11 And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering.
Peter and John went to the temple to pray. Many Jews went three times a day. This lame man was at the Beautiful gate to beg. There was no welfare or food stamps. Being lame, he needed someone to get him to the gate and once there he would beg. He saw Peter and John and asked for money from them. They acknowledged that any help he got would come through Jesus Christ and not them. Peter lifted him up by the right hand and immediately he was healed. Think about how much strength there was in his ankle bones. None. He had never walked before. Imagine him being able to leap and praise God immediately. That’s a miracle. No surgery. No therapy. Just the name of Jesus. The people were filled with wonder. The lame man asked for money, not healing. Perhaps he accepted his life as a lame man looking for money, but he got more than he asked for when he talked to Peter and John.
(1) We see the powerlessness of the man. Someone cared enough to bring him to the gate. Aren’t you glad someone cared enough for you. The humanistic philosophy says you can save yourself. You cannot. Jesus died in our place to give us a right relationship with God. Ephesians 2:9 says salvation is Not of works, lest any man should boast. Paul was saying that if we had salvation on our own we could boast. We don’t. The only one we can boast about is the Lord. You cannot evolve into a Christian either. The lame man was born this way. You and I were born in sin. Psalms 51:5 says Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me. Conception and childbearing are not sinful. This means that the nature of Adam is in us at birth, the nature he received after he sinned. This is a byproduct of sin. Babies die and are covered but babies grown need to be covered by the blood of Jesus. It’s about a personal relationship with God.
(2) We also see the performance of the miracle. Peter said “look on us” and this was the invitation. God said in Isaiah we have to look to him. Does America need help? Yes. And the help must come from him. I learned not to look to Washington for help. I can’t depend on them for help. The source of help is God. During an invitation there should be no distractions. Don’t leave during this time. It only takes a little bit for the devil to crowd out what I’ve said the past 35 minutes. The devil will use the least little thing, even if it’s a crying baby. There was an expectation from the lame man when he looked at them. You have a right to expect something from the preacher. I have a responsibility to feed you; what you do is up to you. I have to prepare by study and prayer. This is about Jesus. It was a mighty miracle to heal this man. Peter reached down and helped him. What can we do to help people. We can pray. Most of us were saved because someone prayed for us. I believe in intercessory prayer. I’d rather pray that God would convict a person, even if he was miserable a few days, if it kept him out of hell. I’m glad somebody prayed for me. Lot was spared due to the intercessory prayer of Abraham. You may be the very means that keeps somebody out of hell. Don’t quit praying. We can give. Money is required to send and keep missionaries on the field. Could God plant a money tree for us to pick from? Sure. But he’s chosen to work through us to put people on the field. We can witness where we are. We don’t need to be a missionary in Africa if we can’t tell people here about Jesus.
(3) There is proof of a miracle. The change was immediate. Look as verse 7: as soon as Peter told him to rise and walk, immediately he arose. Salvation is not a process. Thinking about coming to Christ may be, but getting saved is in a moment. I didn’t have to come back a week later, a month later, and get something else. I was ready for heaven when I repented of my sin and was saved. The change was complete. Verses 7-8 prove it. Not begging, he was leaping and praising God. It comes when we accept Jesus as Savior. Old things pass away; all things are new. We didn’t turn over a new leaf. We became a new creature. It all happens when Jesus comes into our heart. He went to church. He’d been outside the temple for years but after this he went in with Peter and John. When people are right with God, I believe they’ll want to go to church. He was happy. Verse 8 says so. Christians ought to be the happiest people on earth. Is everyday a ray of sunshine? No; there are dark days but it’s a lot better now than it used to be. We have somebody to go through the storms with us. He was filled with gratitude. He praised God. When is the last time you thanked God for saving you?
This man’s life became a testimony for Jesus. Everyone knew who he was. They saw a change in his life and they knew who was responsible. Is your life a testimony for Jesus? The Bible says a tree is known by its fruit. Do people want to be a Christian because of your life? They may never read this Bible, but they can read it through you. The miracles: raising the dead, healing the sick, feeding the multitudes? Yes, but the greatest miracle is seeing a person saved. You can leave this world a lame person and still walk in glory. You can leave here deaf and be able to hear in heaven. Never had a miracle in your life? You have if you’ve been saved. Do you need a miracle? Come to Jesus and be saved.