And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together to them in the porch that is called Solomon's…
This was in thorough consonance with the miracle. The people were excited, the apostles were calm; the people clamoured in darkness, the apostles spoke from the serene elevation of cloudless height; the people were startled by a spectacle, the apostles were controlled by law. Was it not almost a mockery to ask the people why they marvelled? Are great works to be regarded without surprise? Are men to become familiar with the outstretched arm of God and to be calm? The power that can restore is one that can destroy; what if that dread power be preparing itself to strike? It would strike but once — its stroke would be death. Peter's speech may be regarded as showing —
I. THE FALSE METHOD OF LOOKING AT HUMAN AFFAIRS — "As though by our own power," etc.
1. The visible is not the final.
2. Second causes do not explain life. There is a false method of looking at the results of —
(3) Thinking.The man who does not look beyond second causes lives in distraction — in chaos!
II. THE TRUE METHOD OF REGARDING EXTRA, ORDINARY EVENTS — "God hath glorified His Son Jesus." "Faith in His name hath made this man strong." That is the sublime explanation of all recovery, progress, abiding strength and comfort. Forget God, and society in every phase and movement becomes a riddle without an answer; its happiness is but a lucky chance — its misery an unexpected cloud. Regard life as controlled and blessed by the mediation of Christ, then —
1. There is discipline in every event — design, meaning, however untoward and unmanageable the event.
2. A purpose of restoration runs through all human training. See how new, how beautiful, life would be, if after all its happy experiences we could say, "God hath glorified His Son Jesus"! Physical recovery; spiritual forgiveness; special interpositions; even death itself.
III. THE ONLY METHOD OF SETTING MAN RIGHT WITH GOD. "Repent ye therefore," etc. The men who worked miracles spoke plain words about men's souls. There is no ambiguity here. Are the old words "Repent," "Be converted," being allowed to slip out of Christian teaching, and are we now trifling with the character and destiny of men?
1. Every man must repent, because every man has sinned.
2. Every man must be converted, because every man is in a false moral condition.
IV. THE SUBLIME OBJECT OF CHRIST'S INCARNATION — "To bless you," etc.
1. Where iniquity is there is no blessing.
2. Physical restoration is the type of spiritual completeness.Conclusion:
1. Two practical lessons arise out of the subject.
(1) It is not enough to wonder at the mighty works of God.
(2) God's glory is even identified with the well being of man. "Restitution," "Refreshing," "Blessing."
2. Peter's appeal rested upon a solid Biblical basis; Moses, Samuel, and all the prophets. God's message is the summing up of all the voices of holy history.
(J. Parker, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon's, greatly wondering.