Facing the Truth – Acts 3:11-26
What is truth? Truth is reality. Truth is raw. Truth shows no partiality. There are two ideas concerning truth that people have. Some say that truth is relative, others say that truth is absolute. I believe the issue here has to do with properly defining what truth is. You may say that there are some things that are true for you that are not true for me. However, such an idea is easily deterred simply by the way we speak. For example, it is true that your grandmother is your grandmother. It is also true that your grandmother is not my grandmother. These are two different facts. It is not truth that is changing or truth that is true for you and not true for me. Some will say that a statement such as: Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are the best doughnuts in the world is an example of truth being relative. However, such a statement is not a statement of fact or truth, it is simply a statement of opinion. Therefore, it is true that my opinion is that Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are the best doughnuts in the world. Or it may be true that your opinion is that Krispy Kreme Doughnuts are not the best doughnuts in the world. So, you see, what we may think of as truth being relative is simply matters of opinion instead of matters of fact. Therefore, I believe that truth is not relative. It is absolute. In other words, there are things that are true no matter what your opinion may be. Truth does not change. Something is either true or it is not true. Truth is absolute.
The authority that determines what is true is the Word of God. When we are faced with the truth, we have choice to make. We may accept that truth and believe it or we may reject it. In Acts 3:11-26 we see an account where the people who witnessed the healing of the lame man came face to face with the truth.
Misplaced Worship (v. 11-12). As the lame man walked and leaped into the temple, he grabbed hold of Peter and John. He embraced them as a gesture of gratitude. The people saw the commotion and ran to Peter and John. Verse 12 indicates to us that the people were in awe of Peter and John and were of the mindset that it was Peter and John who healed the lame man. They were looking at Peter and John rather than looking to Jesus. How often do we see this very thing taking place in our religious circles today! People are drawn to a good-looking charismatic leader. People are drawn to a church that has the best music and the best use of technology. Many people today will worship a preacher. Many people today will worship a church. So often, our worship is misplaced. We clap for those who sing and play instruments. We clap for that preacher that stirs our emotions. Is this not misplaced worship? We are not to clap for the performer or the performance. However, we should clap for the one we are performing for and that is Jesus. We tend to focus on what we have and what God has blessed us with. We worship the blessing rather than worshipping the blesser. Too often our worship is misplaced.
The Hard Truth (v. 13-15 & 17-18). Peter takes this opportunity to reveal the truth to the people. He holds no punches. He gives them the truth straight up. He tells them that it was in the name of Jesus that the lame man was healed. It is was in the name of the one whom they rejected and crucified. The hard truth for us is that it was are misplaced worship that put Jesus on the cross. It was your sin and my sin that placed Him there. As the old hymn says:
Behold the man upon the cross, my sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed, I hear my mocking voice call out among the scoffers
It was my sin that held Him there until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life; I know that it is finished.
The Solution (v. 16 & 19). As we face the hard truth concerning our misplaced worship and our sin, by the grace of God, we are given a solution. First of all, as we see in verse 19, we must repent. This is a repentance unto salvation. Peter tells them that they must change their mind concerning Jesus and trust in Him completely. Secondly, we must have faith in Jesus. In verse 16, Peter explains how the lame man had faith. It was his faith in Jesus that made him whole. The same is true for us today. In order to have our sins blotted out and come into a right relationship with God, we must have faith in the Lord Jesus. The bottom line is that the solution to our sin problem is Jesus. The truth we must face is Jesus. We must face the truth that Jesus is the only way and our only hope is to place our faith in Him.
A special privilege (v. 22-26). Peter explains to he all Jewish audience that they are descendants of the prophets and that they are privileged to have access to the truth. You and I are also privileged. Living in America, we have access to the truth concerning Jesus. There is no excuse. There is no reason for us to not believe.
A perfect future (v. 20-21). These verses are in reference to the millennial Kingdom. All those who place their faith in the Lord Jesus are given a glorious future. When the time comes, and God brings everything to completion, we who know Jesus will live and reign with Him!
No matter who you are, there comes a time when you must face the truth. The truth is that you are a sinner and your only hope is found in having faith in the Lord Jesus. You are privileged to have this opportunity. Face the truth. Accept the truth. Receive Jesus today and have a glorious future.