A Time Of Miracles
God, I want to see Your hand at work in and through my life today. Use me.
Read Acts 9:32–43
32 As Peter traveled about the country, he went to visit the Lord’s people who lived in Lydda. 33 There he found a man named Aeneas, who was paralyzed and had been bedridden for eight years. 34 “Aeneas,” Peter said to him, “Jesus Christ heals you. Get up and roll up your mat.” Immediately Aeneas got up. 35 All those who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord.
36 In Joppa there was a disciple named Tabitha (in Greek her name is Dorcas); she was always doing good and helping the poor. 37 About that time she became sick and died, and her body was washed and placed in an upstairs room. 38 Lydda was near Joppa; so when the disciples heard that Peter was in Lydda, they sent two men to him and urged him, “Please come at once!”
39 Peter went with them, and when he arrived he was taken upstairs to the room. All the widows stood around him, crying and showing him the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them.
40 Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. 41 He took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called for the believers, especially the widows, and presented her to them alive. 42 This became known all over Joppa, and many people believed in the Lord. 43 Peter stayed in Joppa for some time with a tanner named Simon.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectGod’s hand at work is a testimony to unbelievers. Is God’s handiwork seen in your life?
The focus shifts away from Saul to Peter. The church was still reeling from the persecution following Stephen’s death, and small pockets of believers were gathering in isolated settlements all over the region (31). Peter went to visit them. Lydda (called Lod in the Old Testament) is close to modern Tel Aviv, near the west coast. Just as Jesus healed a paralyzed man and raised a loved one from the dead, so Peter did in Jesus’ name. This was no more than what Jesus said would happen among his disciples (John 14:12).
There is a strong link in these stories between seeing miracles and being convinced of the truth about Jesus (35,42). It seems that true words and powerful actions together were very persuasive—just as they are today. Whether the actions are specifically miraculous, as in Peter’s healings, or stemming from a kind and helpful Christian character, as in Dorcas’s life, the combination of word and action together makes an impact on others.
After these amazing events Peter stayed on for a while. His host was a tanner—an unattractive occupation due to the unpleasant smell of the process—but even strong-smelling tanners were welcomed by followers of Jesus!
Think of someone you admire because they are good and kind. Pray that God would magnify his grace to them even more.
Lord, may my witness to Your love be more than just words today.
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