Commentary on Acts


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God would 'prove' His purpose and put His stamp on the new work by doing special signs. Speaking in foreign languages was one amazing sign that God was at work in their lives. Remember Peter's words from an event that had not yet happened, "And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them, just as He did upon us at the beginning. Peter and others saw God work in some unique way which enabled them to cross over the barriers of traditionalism.

We should not think of the Spirit of God working only in special ways unto salvation but also after salvation. Every believer has a special gift or unction from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit marvelously works in every believer. It is up to each believer to be aware how to step back and let the Holy Spirit marvelously work in their lives. These gifts are given from the Lord to allow the Spirit to fully work through the lives of His people read more on spiritual gifts for a deeper understanding.

Joel speaks about prophesies, visions and dreams.


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The Lord could have given these prophetic messages without the gift of speaking foreign languages but did not. The speaking of foreign languages had at least four purposes: Speaking in foreign languages was clear evidence that God was indeed giving special prophetic messages to different individuals. They were not speaking on their own. God was demonstrating that He was now not only working with the priestly or prophetic class of men but with all kinds of people including men and women, young and old and even slaves.

The gospel was for all the nations. See Acts "added that day" about three thousand souls. If the signs of the new era were difficult to comprehend, these signs of the old passing away might seem even more difficult to grasp. It is interesting that Peter did not stop with verse 18 in the quote from Joel 2. Peter could have clarified what God was doing only by speaking about the Spirit's work in His people on that day, but he went on and clarified the end of the old era.

Confusion of the new era will persist until the closure of the old era is clear. Most of the great difficulties that the disciples and the Apostle Paul faced were due to confusion about the ongoing nature of the Old Covenant. Paul was thrown in jail and beaten again and again because he preached that keeping the law was not necessary to gain God's acceptance. So what are the signs of the Old Testament passing away? A whole new kind of day or era would come.

The Book of Acts - Lesson 1: The Background of Acts

It is important to recognize that this important 'day' time period comes about because of underlying changes, namely, the new covenant replaces the old covenant. Second, we already discussed the signs signifying God's new way of working Acts Third, we find there are signs of discontinuing of the old way i. Old Covenant. Let's examine these now. Four phrases are mentioned though we see some of them perhaps refer to the same thing the parallelism is clear.

Wonders in the sky above Signs on the earth beneath, blood, and fire and vapor of smoke Sun shall be turned into darkness Moon into blood The description here is very hard for those raised in the Western community to understand. Those trained with scientific accuracy down to decimal places often have difficulty understanding this kind of poetic and symbolic language.

The symbols point to real events but not specific as the moon literally turning into real blood. Our minds should first turn to what happened when Jesus the Messiah was rejected and murdered. Many great things happened both in the sky and on the earth as indicated by the verses. Included are a great earthquake, many rose from the dead, the sky went completely dark for three hours when the sun should have shone at its greatest and the veil of the temple was torn in two observe Rev.

And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom, and the earth shook; and the rocks were split, and the tombs were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised" Matthew Surely the cry of the centurion came out with the proper understanding, "Truly this was the Son of God! These were many great signs that were happening that signified the change of administrations. Luke, who also wrote Acts, also mentioned these in Luke The moon probably did look red. Peter freely quoted it and so it probably happened on the day Jesus hung on the cross.

We do not have a way to directly confirm it through testimony. Some will wonder whether this is what we should understand by what Joel had prophesied many years earlier and which Peter affirmed, "This is what was spoken of This makes the most sense. Remember that they had just been in Jerusalem to witness all these things.

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All of Jerusalem went pitch black. All of Jerusalem had a huge earthquake. They all heard about the temple veil being torn. Peter is putting it all together for them. In the next section Peter goes on and articulates these very things: Jesus' signs and death and resurrection.

Jesus is the focus here. Putting to death the "Son of God" had serious consequences for Israel. They rejected God in the most serious way. God now has rejected them and reached out to the nations see Paul's convincing argument in Romans We see the great change take place when the signs of the heavens darkness and earth earthquake and God-man events veil torn took place. This was part of a greater change as God took steps to judge Israel as a nation.


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This would take place in another 35 years or so in 70 A. That was a devastating destruction of Jerusalem predicted by Jesus closely recorded by Josephus the Historian. Notice again the connection of " the times of Gentiles " where they are reached by the Gospel and the signs in Luke wrote this and was quite aware of all of this as he penned Acts 2.

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There are many theological insights and problems that find their way out of this passage, but we will be content to focus on the signs and turn to how Peter interprets the introduction of this new era in the following verses. Acts Acts Acts Acts Video Podcast. Spirit Dependent Living Wise planning makes a great difference. Discover how idols can impact your life! Be Saved! The Explanation of Pentecost Acts Acts Acts Acts Acts Video Podcast This is part 1 of 3 excluding the podcast on Acts which focuses on the meaning and implications of Pentecost on the year Jesus died.

Introduction When the gospel is preached, we might find a few people have been saved.

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The Explanation of Pentecost Acts B. The Exhortation to the People Acts A. The Explanation of Pentecost Acts If we are going to appreciate Peter's message, we will first need to better understand the unique setting of Acts 2. Evangelism: A message which brings the truth of Jesus Christ's person and work to another so that he might believe in Christ, find forgiveness of sin and possess eternal life.

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