Acts 3:10 – And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.
When Jesus walked in the earth fulfilling His earthly ministry, He did signs and wonders too numerous to tell. Some He did in public, and some He did in private. There were mighty manifestations of Holy Spirit upon Jesus, some in public (Holy Spirit coming on Him at His baptism), some in an exclusive setting (the events at His transfiguration). When things were done in the public setting, Jesus let them stand as they happened. But often, in the private arena, Jesus would say to those who had received, or even to His disciples, to tell no one. He was aware that many desired to take Him and make Him king over Israel immediately, and Jesus knew that such must not be allowed to happen.
But AFTER His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension, things changed. Now it was time to proclaim the Gospel; to declare the things they had both seen and heard. And so, it was with the healing of the lame man at the gate Beautiful. This was both a public event, and a powerful public witness. Look at our Text for Today. When the people who were witnessing what was happening realized that the man who was “walking, and leaping, and praising God” was the man who had begged alms at the gate Beautiful every day, they were “filled with wonder and amazement.”
Today, in our churches, we often minister to the sick and afflicted. I know that many are healed and delivered, and that miracles still occur. For that I am thankful. But a problem arises there for the church. We see it IN the church house, but it is not witnessed IN THE GATES. We may rejoice in the church service, but there is no rejoicing in the streets and marketplaces. Yes, I realize that when the man first leaped up, he entered the temple, but our Text for Today does not say that was the only place people recognized him as the former lame man.
My point is simple. It is long past time that the working of Holy Spirit should be clearly and regularly witnessed OUTSIDE the church house. It’s good to be bold in the pulpit or the Sunday school class, but we need that same boldness, if not greater, on the street, in the marketplace, at the restaurant, and in our own homes. Forces from all directions have been quite successful and stripping holy boldness from the Church. It’s time we took it back, and have done all to stand, TO STAND!
Manna for Today – Acts 3:1-10; Matthew 8:4 & 16:20; Mark 7:36 & 9:9; Mark 16:15-20; Acts 4:20; Acts 22:15; 1 John 1:3; Ephesians 6:10-18