Summary: God wants us to look for opportunities to minister to people, share the message of Jesus, and depend on the Master.
Completing the Mission That Jesus Began
Ministering For the Master
Read Acts 3_1-26
Acts 3:1 One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer — at three in the afternoon. NIV
Peter and John went to the temple together. When you do ministry, try to do it with another believer.
Now Peter and John were close friends. They had been fishermen together and they hung around with
each other. They were two of Jesus’s closest disciples. They ran to the tomb of Jesus together on the morning of the resurrection. They traveled together in the early chapters of the book of Acts. They were close friends.
It's interesting to note that John never says anything that is recorded for us. Peter does all the talking. It illustrates how God puts people together that complement each other. When you do ministry try to do it with another belivers.
Ill. Bev and I like doing ministry together and we do it all the time. We complement each other because we are different personalities. God put us together that way.
It was probably Peter and John’s custom to pray three times a day in the temple. The Jewish hours of prayer were 9 am, 12 o'clock and 3pm.
Luke 24:53 And they stayed continually at the temple, praising God. NIV
Acts 2:46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. NIV
Peter and John may not have yet fully understood that Jesus had fulfilled all of the ceremonial Law of Moses. Therefore, the temple and all of its ceremonies and sacrifices were not necessary. The temple and all of its ceremonies and sacrifices had only pictures pointing to Jesus the Messiah. The true worshipper no longer worships in a temple made with human hands. The true worshipper worships God in spirit and in truth. We can worship God anywhere. We are told to come boldly before the throne of God. Hebrews 4:16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. NIV
Jesus through His one sacrifice has made it possible for us to come directly to God. We do not go through a priest. All believers are priests and constitute the royal priesthood of God who all have free access to come directly to God. For a believer to go to a human priest is to deny and to defame the work of Christ.
Yes, some believers today think they have to go through a priest. They do not know the teaching of the Scriptures.
We need to be kind and respectful of them and teach them the truth of the Word when we have the opportunity. We should never speak of them in a disparaging way, but only have compassion on them.
I imagine that it was crowded when Peter and John got to the temple. It was an awful lot of people going to the temple. They went through the temple gate called Beautiful.
Josephus, the historian that lived around the time of Jesus, tells us that all of the gates in the innermost court were folding gates and were overlaid with silver and gold. Josephus says that the gate called Beautiful was bigger than all the rest. It was 75 feet high, and 60 feet wide and it was made of Corinthian brass overlaid with gold. It took 20 men to close it.
T. S. So Peter and John went to the temple together and we will see they were sensitive to the Holy Spirit and were looking for opportunities to minister. We need to learn from their pattern. The 1st thing we need to…
1. Look for opportunities to minister.
That is what Peter and John did.
Acts 3:2 Now a man crippled from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful, where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts. NIV
Luke who was a physician adds the details to indicate how severely crippled he was.
He's carried there every day (and the verb is in the imperfect, which means he was habitually being carried there). He was 40 years old. (We see that is Acts 4:22 For the man who was miraculously healed was over forty years old. NIV)
That spot was probably his spot and he was well known to all the people in Jerusalem who would go by him every day. They knew him because he'd been there for so many years.
Peter and John went to the temple and they were sensitive to God and looked for opportunities to minister.
Acts 3:3 When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. NIV