Acts 4;13

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 3, Day 4: Acts 4:1-22

Summary of Acts 4:1-22:

The priests and the Sadducees arrest Peter and John because they were teaching people Jesus rose from the dead.  But many heard and more were converted.

The next day the pair was brought before the Sanhedrin (a group resembling the group Jesus was brought before) and asked by what power they healed.  Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, speaks the truth, “It is by the name of Jesus Christ whom you killed that this man is healed.  Salvation is found only in Jesus.

The learned men were astonished these so-called unschooled, ordinary men could heal.  They could do nothing since everyone had seen the man healed.  The Sanhedrin want to stop them from speaking in Jesus’ name but when they asked Peter and John to stop, they refused. Reluctantly, the two were let go since they could not deny a miracle had taken place.

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 3, Day 4: Acts 4:1-22

10) Peter proclaimed that Jesus alone has the power to raise the dead and that salvation is found in no one else but Jesus. It makes a difference if you are saved and go to heaven or not. Believers are saved; unbelievers in Jesus Christ as the Savior are not.

11a) Even more people believed, now numbering 5000. Those who arrested them took note as well of Jesus’ power. All the people were praising God for what had happened so they were set free.

b) Personal Question. My answer: The power of Jesus can overcome anything so give my troubles to him.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 3, Day 4: Acts 4:1-22

When we did Acts before, Lesson 3 covered Acts 3-7. I’m wondering where we’re going this year. It’s cool to see how the authorities can’t do anything because they can’t refute the power of Jesus.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 3, Day 4: Acts 4:1-22

The captain of the temple is the police force of the temple. Boice says that the emphasis in the original indicates that they stopped and seized Peter and John suddenly.

The Sadducees were disturbed that Peter and John taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead; they did not believe in the afterlife or the resurrection at all.

This was a scare tactic on the part of the authorities to get Peter and John to stop preaching about Jesus. Acts 4:21 mentions further threats.  Boice notes that Acts 4:1-6 lists no less than 11 different groups or individuals opposing these followers of Jesus.

This was a scene of power and intimidation. This same group of leaders had recently condemned Jesus to death, and they wanted them to know that they had the power to do the same thing to Peter and John.

mountains

Peter’s logic was piercing – why are we on trial for a good deed?

The quotation from Psalm 118:22 was appropriate. Jesus was rejected by men – by those leaders – but was exalted by His Father.

God uses both educated and uneducated men for His purpose. It’s just as wrong to think that formal education disqualifies someone for effective service as it is to think that it automatically qualifies someone for effective service.

It is interesting to note what the Jewish leaders did not do: they did not make any attempt to disprove the resurrection of Jesus. If it were possible to do, this was the time to do it; yet they could not.

Luke probably found out what the Sanhedrin discussed among themselves because a member of that Sanhedrin later became a Christian: Saul of Tarsus. Acts 26:10 gives us reason to believe Paul (Saul) was a member of the Sanhedrin to cast his vote against the early Christians.

If this is true, then Peter and John had no idea they were preaching to a future apostle and the greatest missionary the church would ever see. We have no idea how greatly God can use us.

How God Uses Bad Situations for Good

  • 2,000 more people came to believe in Jesus
  • Peter was filled with the Holy Spirit again
  • Peter preached Jesus to the leaders of the Jews
  • Hostile examiners and unbelievers confirmed a miraculous healing
  • The enemies of Jesus were confused
  • Peter and John were bolder for Jesus than ever before
  • God was glorified
bsf acts lesson 1 day 2

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 1, Day 2: Acts 1:1-4, Luke 24:13-49

Summary of Acts 1:1-4:

Luke (the writer of Acts) tells Theophilus that he previously wrote (in the book of Luke) about Jesus’s actions and teachings up to the day he ascended to Heaven after instructing the apostles through the Holy Spirit.  Jesus gave proofs to the apostles that he was alive after he had been crucified, and Jesus continued to appear before them for 40 days, speaking about God’s kingdom.  On one occasion, Jesus instructed the apostles to not leave Jerusalem until they received the gift God has promised.

Summary of Luke 24:13-49:

Two men were walking along the road to Emmaus when Jesus appeared to them after he was crucified. The men did not recognize Jesus who then told Jesus about his own death. Jesus responded by admonishes them for not believing the prophets when they spoke of Jesus’s death.  Jesus then explains the scriptures (the OT) to them concerning himself (basically, how his life, death, and resurrection crowned centuries of God’s work). Jesus stayed with them, broke bread with them, and he was recognized. However, he disappeared after that. They told the 11 disciples all that had happened.

Jesus then appears before the disciples in Jerusalem. The apostles are frightened and Jesus asks why they don’t believe it’s him.  “Look at my hands and my feet.  It is I…” and Jesus showed his hands and feet where he had been pierced on the cross.  He ate with them and reiterated how every prophecy must be fulfilled from the Old Testament.  Then Jesus opened their minds so they could understand how he must suffer, die, and rise again; forgiveness of sins will be preached.  But first, Jesus will send them what God has promised so they must remain in Jerusalem until they have been clothed with power from on high.

Jesus led them to Bethany where he blessed the disciples and arose into Heaven.  The disciples worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem where they remained, praising God at His temple.

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 1, Day 2: Acts 1:1-4, Luke 24:13-49

3) Personally. Jesus appears to his disciples and other believers and continues to teach them and put the pieces of his death together for them.

4) Part personal Question. My answer: Jesus still needed to teach his disciples, and he needed to have proof, or witnesses, that he was risen in the form of testimony. He also needed to explain about the Holy Spirit. I’d want to know when the Second Coming was, and I’d ask about everything else I don’ know!

5) Personal Question. My answer: It’s helpful to know that this life and troubles are temporary, that there is a better place awaiting — a place with God, Jesus, and no evil in the world.

Conclusions BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 1, Day 2: Acts 1:1-4, Luke 24:13-49

Acts opens fairly simply with Luke casually talking about Jesus hanging out with the disciples after his resurrection. No big deal.

End Notes BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 1, Day 2: Acts 1:1-4, Luke 24:13-49

Yay! First Lesson of the Study of Acts and Letters of the Apostles. So exciting!

Acts 1:1-4:

Luke, the writer of Acts, was a physician (Colossians 4:14), a Gentile, and a devoted follower of Paul (from the text of Acts, and Colossians 4:14, Philemon 24, and 2 Timothy 4:11). That’s about all we know about him.

Theophilus (Greek meaning lover of God) is the person to whom Luke is writing the books of Acts (and the book of Luke previously) to. He could have been a Christian or a Roman official. We don’t know anything else about him, although he may have held office since Luke calls him “most excellent.”

One theory has Acts as a defense book on Paul’s behalf since Luke was with Paul in Jerusalem (Acts 21:17) and went to Rome with him (Acts 27:1).

Fun Fact:  “Ancient books were generally written on papyrus scrolls. It was practical to have a scroll about thirty-five feet in length. When it got any longer it got too bulky to carry around. This physical limitation has determined the length of many books of the Bible.” (Boice) Luke used two scrolls to tell his story, and one we call “The Gospel of Luke” and the other we call “The Book of Acts.”

Acts spans a period of about 30 years, and takes us up to about A.D. 60 or 61, with Paul in Rome waiting to appear before Caesar Nero. This same Nero began his infamous persecutions of Christians in A.D. 64.

Note how Jesus rose and spoke to the disciples with the power of the Holy Spirit.  If the glorified, resurrected Jesus needed and relied on the Holy Spirit, so should we. This will be an on-going theme throughout Acts that we need the Holy Spirit to operate as well.

The Power of the Father (or Holy Spirit) is:

  • Reliable
  • Belongs to all
  • Received by faith
  • Requires patience

Luke 24:13-49:

These 2 anonymous disciples were sad that Jesus had not redeemed Israel. Jesus appeared to set them right. They indeed were redeemed! Jesus teaches them:

  • He had to suffer
  • The cross was necessary
  • The Messiah Moses predicted

God’s word can burn on your heart like it burned on theirs.

Jesus had to ascend to heaven so that confidence would be put in the power and ministry of the Holy Spirit, not in the geographical presence of Jesus.