Change of Heart

photo by Mcgill, canstockphoto.com
photo by Mcgill, canstockphoto.com

 

Acts 3:12-19
Psalm 4
1 John 3:1-7
Luke 24:36b-48

 

Jesus was sacrificed in much the same way that the Passover lambs were sacrificed, and on the same day. He was dead in the grave at the beginning of the week of the Feast of Unleavened Bread when no bread made with yeast was to be eaten; it was dead. Jesus came out of the grave on the first day of the week, on the very day of the First Fruits; the day when the first barley was harvested and made into bread in the Temple.

We tend of think only of Passover in association with Easter, but there were (and are) actually three separate holy days, and Jesus fulfilled the symbols of each of the three. Further, the next holy day came fifty days later, Shavuot, or Pentecost, the Feast of the First Fruits of the wheat harvest. On that day the Holy Spirit baptized the faithful followers of Jesus.

Peter and John were among those faithful and received the power of the Holy Spirit. We read last week that Jesus blew his breath on them, giving them the Spirit of God. The difference between the two: at Pentecost they received Power; they were made whole and complete Apostles.

In today’s passage from Acts we read about the reaction to the healing of the crippled man at the Beautiful Gate of the Temple. Peter then responded to the babble by telling them about Jesus, concluding with:

Then he opened their minds so that they could understand the scriptures, and added, “That is how it was written, and that is why it was inevitable that Christ should suffer, and rise from the dead on the third day. So must the change of heart which leads to the forgiveness of sins be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning at JerusalemPhillips

 

Be righteous and do good.

Mike Lawrence

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