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Learning to Walk (1)

I spend a lot of time in the Book of the Acts of the Apostles. It is full of cases of conversions and of the stories related to the apostles, their work and the beginning of the church, as I have previously noted.

At this sitting I am interested in the third and fourth chapter where the healing of a lame man and the events that followed are recorded:

Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. 2 And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. 3 Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. 4 And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” 5 And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. 6 But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!”

(Acts 3: 1-6 ESV)

This was a unique and remarkable miracle in which a man incapable of ever having taken a single step was healed of his congenital deformity in public, in front of a cast of witnesses – believers and non.

We are not given the man’s name but only that he was known and seen of all who entered by the Beautiful Gate. But then it is common in the Bible as here in Acts to allow just a bare minimum of detail. No names, no banter, no slap on the head. No “let’s thank Jesus while Jesus is thanking me” nonsense. The important information was given as John would later write about the signs: “That you may believe.”

This miracle of healing was witnessed by so many people to negate any attempts to discredit it or to suggest that it had been staged and was a clever fabrication. No false healer has or will ever manage anything like it. It put the glory and power of the Christ on open display, out in plain sight where it was indisputable as to how and what had happened. And it showed that there were at that time twelve men who had been granted a power beyond anything ever seen in all of history, either before or since.