You men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs…
We have here —
I. A DISTINCT AFFIRMATION OF THE PROPER HUMANITY OF JESUS. "Jesus of Nazareth, a Man." Under this name He had been "among" them. They had not to think of Him as a recluse, but as one who had frequented the common walks of life. This would prepare the audience to think of His sympathy and compassion. But they knew that He had not been aa ordinary man. Around His person had gathered most remarkable circumstances that had to be accounted for. Accordingly we find in the text —
II. A DISTINCT ASSERTION OF THE EXTRAORDINARY CREDENTIALS OF JESUS. He had been "approved of God by miracles" etc. These had demonstrated Him to be what He professed to be. Such things revealed the mind of God, and Peter now affirmed that the life of Jesus was full of God. This was a new thought to some who heard it. It followed that certain impressions of Jesus had to be corrected. For the present it was enough to make the hearer feel that Jesus was God's messenger. More would follow.
III. Peter declares THAT EVEN THE SUFFERINGS OF CHRIST WERE INCLUDED IN THE DIVINE PLAN. He had been apprehended and nailed to the Cross by the lawless, the representatives of Roman power; but in delivering Him up the Jews had been the greatest criminals, and this charge was now urged home upon them. Yet, as Peter explains, this was only in accordance with the Divine decree. Observe, then, that men are held accountable though they do not act with uncontrolled power, and that there is no excuse for sin in the mysterious blending of the Divine and the human in the working out of God's decrees. If we could adequately survey all the facts, we might be able to remove the apparent disagreement between Divine sovereignty and human freedom: but we are ignorant.
IV. PETER AFFIRMS THAT IN SPITE OF APPEARANCES JESUS HAS GAINED A COMPLETE VICTORY. "Whom God raised up."
Parallel VersesKJV: Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know: