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  The Great Bible Story #118
A miracle and a sermon

Jacob Ninan
Peter and John were going to the temple in the afternoon at the time of prayer, and they saw a man sitting at the gate who was born lame. Peter looked at him and told him they didn't have any money to give him. What they could give instead was healing! He told the man to get up to his feet, and held him up with his hand. Immediately the man's legs were healed, and he began dancing around with joy!

The people who saw this understood that an extraordinary miracle had just taken place. Soon a crowd gathered around and started looking at Peter with amazement. Peter was shocked that they should think he had done this from himself. He quickly explained to the people that it wasn't anything in him or John that made this happen, but that Jesus had done this when they put their trust in Him.

As the crowd listened intently, Peter told them that Jesus was the Messiah they were looking for. It was the plan of God which was revealed by the prophets that the Messiah should suffer and be killed. When they put Him to death, they were actually fulfilling God's plan even though they did it in ignorance. But God raised Him from the dead and announced Him as Lord. Now Peter asked them to repent from their sins and to turn to God. Many who listened to him, about five thousand people, believed the message.

But some priests and Sadducees came there with the temple guards, arrested Peter and John and put them in jail because it disturbed them that they were preaching about rising from the dead. (The Sadducees were a sect who didn't believe in miracles or life after death.)

The next morning the chief priests and other leaders came together along with the high priest Annas. They asked Peter and John to explain how they had done the miracle.

Peter experienced a mighty filling of the Holy Spirit at this time, and he stood up boldly to speak. He told them that it was by the authority of the name of Jesus, whom they had crucified and whom God had raised up, that the man's legs were fine now. He also said that God had set up Jesus as the only way for salvation for everybody.

The rulers couldn't understand how uneducated men like Peter could talk like this, and they concluded that this was the work of Jesus. Also, they couldn't deny the fact that a miracle had actually happened, because the man was in front of them! So they just threatened Peter not to speak again about Jesus. But he said he would obey God rather than men.

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Comfort & Counsel