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The Book of Acts, lessons, commentary and study guide from the church of Christ

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Bobby Stafford Acts 2:22-28  (Lesson 7)     

The Book of Acts

Chapter 2:22-28

Verse 22  Acts 2:22 “Men of Israel, hear these words:  Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know”–  NKJV

Peter begins to tell them what they need to know –  Jesus the Nazarene was “attested” by God, proved by demonstration to be the Son of God by “miracles” [mighty works] which underscored the power of God; “wonders” which focused on the effect produced in those who witnessed the event; and “signs” that revealed the design or purpose of the miracles which was to show the divine nature of Jesus.

These miracles had been done openly in the sight of countless witnesses.  (John 11:47) “Then the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered a council and said, ‘What shall we do?  For this Man works many signs.”  (John12:37) “But although He had done so many signs before them, they did not believe in Him.”  NKJV  No doubt the last fifty days had consisted of people discussing Jesus – His life, death on the cross, the empty tomb.  (Luke 24:18-24)

Verse 23  Acts 2:23 “Him, being delivered by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God, you have taken by lawless hands, have crucified, and put to death;” NKJV

Christ was delivered up to die as a result of God’s predetermined plan and foreknowledge.  It was not an accident or a surprise to God.  (I Peter 1:20) “He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you” NKJV  The plan for the Word to become flesh and sacrifice Himself on Calvary was executed over the centuries.  (Galatians 4:4) “But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law,” NKJV

Peter blames those listening [Jews] for putting Jesus to death by using the Roman soldiers.  The use of the word “lawless” may also suggest the so-called trial was highly illegal.

Christ’s death on a Roman cross was a major stumbling block to the Jews.  (I Corinthians 1:23) “but we preach Christ crucified, to the Jews a stumbling block and to the Greeks foolishness.”  NKJV  The Jews were expecting a Messiah who would come with glory and power; not one who was born in a backward town, work as a carpenter, and die as a criminal.  But death on a cross had been God’s plan all along.  (Psalm 22:7-8, 14-18)

Verse 24  Acts 2:24 “whom God raised up, having loosed the pains of death, because it was not possible that He should be held by it.”  NKJV

Now Peter proclaims the most startling news of all.  Jesus’ tomb was empty because God raised Him from the dead!  The resurrection is the heart of Christianity.  (Romans 1:4) “and declared to be the Son of God with power according to the Spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead.”  NKJV  (II Corinthians 4:14) “knowing that He who raised up the Lord Jesus will also raise us up with Jesus, and will present us with you.”  NKJV  (Colossians 2:12) “buried with Him in baptism, in which you also were raised with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.”  NKJV  (I Thessalonians 1:10) “and to wait for His Son from heaven, whom He raised from the dead, even Jesus who delivers us from the wrath to come.”  NKJV  (Hebrews 13:20-22) “Now may the God of peace who brought up our Lord Jesus from the dead, that great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, make you complete in every good work to do His will, working in you what is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever.  Amen.  And I appeal to you, brethren, bear with the word of exhortation, for I have written to you in few words.”  NKJV

“having loosed the pains of death”  The word translated pains or pangs was used of “birth pangs.”  When it is time for a baby to be born, whether the mother is ready or not, it comes forth out of the womb.  Similarly, when it was time for Jesus to come forth from the tomb, [three days], he came forth.  Nothing or no one could stop Him, not even Satan.

Verse 25  Acts 2:25 “For David says concerning Him:  I foresaw the Lord always before my face, For He is at my right hand, that I may not be shaken.”  NKJV

The second Old Testament passage that Peter quotes is Psalm 16:8-11.  By inspiration of God, He proclaims that this psalm of David is a prophecy of the Resurrection of Christ.  The Jews would be listening carefully about David who was revered among them.  They believed rightfully that the Messiah would be a descendant of King David.  (II Samuel 7:12-13)

Verses 26-28  Acts 2:26-28 “Therefore my heart rejoiced, and my tongue was glad; Moreover my flesh also will rest in hope.  For You will not leave my soul in Hades, Nor will You allow Your Holy One to see corruption.  You have made known to me the ways of life; You will make me full of joy in Your presence.”  NKJV

The Messiah’s soul would not be left in Hades, the unseen world.  It is the state of the dead between death and the resurrection.  It is composed of two compartments:  Abraham’s bosom and torment.  (Luke 16:19-31)  Abraham’s bosom is also referred to by Christ as “Paradise.”  (Luke 23:43) “And Jesus said to him, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, today you will be with Me in Paradise.”  NKJV

The penitent thief did not go to heaven because after Jesus’ resurrection He said the following:  (John 20:17) “Jesus said to her, ‘Do not cling to Me, for I have not yet ascended to My Father, but go to My brethren and say to them, I am ascending to My Father and your Father, and to My God and your God.”  NKJV  So Paradise is where the righteous rest waiting for the Judgment.  Jesus’ body was placed in the grave, a tomb.  While there, it did not experience decay.

 

Bobby Stafford  March 22, 2015  [Sunday Evening]  Lesson 7 Acts 2:22-28

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