It is understandable that the formerly lame man still held on to Peter and John, but he didn’t have to. Similarly, we can perhaps become too heavily dependent on people; on leaders who have had a strong influence in our conversion for example. There is, of course, a right kind of dependence on other members of the body of Christ, but it’s important to understand that we can look to and lean on people in unhealthy ways.
Certainly, Peter wouldn’t permit the crowds to think more highly of him and John than they ought. Everyone knew this man and what a total ruin he had been. There was no hope for him, humanly speaking. Now they were all witnesses to a remarkable transformation. ‘But we didn’t do this’, Peter says. ‘Let’s be clear, Jesus did it. He’s alive.’ Peter and John would not steal any of the glory – not a morsel of it.They knew it all belonged to Jesus. There are many points of similarity between this sermon and the one we’ve just read in Acts 2. One of them concerns the boldness of Peter’s preaching: ‘’You…you…You…you…You…’’ (13-15). Peter laid it on the line; he gave them the unvarnished truth; he took aim with a steady arm and his arrow did not miss the target. Although they ‘’acted in ignorance’’ (17), they had killed Jesus – ‘’killed the author of life’’ (15) – but He was now back from the dead. The formerly crippled man was exhibit A in Peter’s case. Here was the evidence – the living proof! The man’s healing was strategic and gave the apostles the opportunity to preach the gospel to many.
In evangelism, let’s talk about Jesus; keep the focus on Jesus. He is the central issue.