Acts 3 // Psalm 133-135

Acts 3 (MSG)

1-5 One day at three o’clock in the afternoon, Peter and John were on their way into the Temple for prayer meeting. At the same time there was a man crippled from birth being carried up. Every day he was set down at the Temple gate, the one named Beautiful, to beg from those going into the Temple. When he saw Peter and John about to enter the Temple, he asked for a handout. Peter, with John at his side, looked him straight in the eye and said, “Look here.” He looked up, expecting to get something from them.

6-8 Peter said, “I don’t have a nickel to my name, but what I do have, I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk!” He grabbed him by the right hand and pulled him up. In an instant his feet and ankles became firm. He jumped to his feet and walked.

8-10 The man went into the Temple with them, walking back and forth, dancing and praising God. Everybody there saw him walking around and praising God. They recognized him as the one who sat begging at the Temple’s Gate Beautiful and rubbed their eyes, astonished, scarcely believing what they were seeing.

11 The man threw his arms around Peter and John, ecstatic. All the people ran up to where they were at Solomon’s Porch to see it for themselves.

Turn to Face God

12-16 When Peter saw he had a congregation, he addressed the people:

“Oh, Israelites, why does this take you by such complete surprise, and why stare at us as if our power or piety made him walk? The God of Abraham and Isaac and Jacob, the God of our ancestors, has glorified his Son Jesus. The very One that Pilate called innocent, you repudiated. You repudiated the Holy One, the Just One, and asked for a murderer in his place. You no sooner killed the Author of Life than God raised him from the dead—and we’re the witnesses. Faith in Jesus’ name put this man, whose condition you know so well, on his feet—yes, faith and nothing but faith put this man healed and whole right before your eyes.

17-18 “And now, friends, I know you had no idea what you were doing when you killed Jesus, and neither did your leaders. But God, who through the preaching of all the prophets had said all along that his Messiah would be killed, knew exactly what you were doing and used it to fulfill his plans.

19-23 “Now it’s time to change your ways! Turn to face God so he can wipe away your sins, pour out showers of blessing to refresh you, and send you the Messiah he prepared for you, namely, Jesus. For the time being he must remain out of sight in heaven until everything is restored to order again just the way God, through the preaching of his holy prophets of old, said it would be. Moses, for instance, said, ‘Your God will raise up for you a prophet just like me from your family. Listen to every word he speaks to you. Every last living soul who refuses to listen to that prophet will be wiped out from the people.’

24-26 “All the prophets from Samuel on down said the same thing, said most emphatically that these days would come. These prophets, along with the covenant God made with your ancestors, are your family tree. God’s covenant-word to Abraham provides the text: ‘By your offspring all the families of the earth will be blessed.’ But you are first in line: God, having raised up his Son, sent him to bless you as you turn, one by one, from your evil ways.”

 


 

Psalm 133-135 (MSG)

A Pilgrim Song of David

133 1-3 How wonderful, how beautiful,
    when brothers and sisters get along!
It’s like costly anointing oil
    flowing down head and beard,
Flowing down Aaron’s beard,
    flowing down the collar of his priestly robes.
It’s like the dew on Mount Hermon
    flowing down the slopes of Zion.
Yes, that’s where God commands the blessing,
    ordains eternal life.

A Pilgrim Song

134 1-3 Come, bless God,
    all you servants of God!
You priests of God, posted to the nightwatch
    in God’s shrine,
Lift your praising hands to the Holy Place,
    and bless God.
In turn, may God of Zion bless you—
    God who made heaven and earth!

135 1-4 Hallelujah!
Praise the name of God,
    praise the works of God.
All you priests on duty in God’s temple,
    serving in the sacred halls of our God,
Shout “Hallelujah!” because God’s so good,
    sing anthems to his beautiful name.
And why? Because God chose Jacob,
    embraced Israel as a prize possession.

5-12 I, too, give witness to the greatness of God,
    our Lord, high above all other gods.
He does just as he pleases—
    however, wherever, whenever.
He makes the weather—clouds and thunder,
    lightning and rain, wind pouring out of the north.
He struck down the Egyptian firstborn,
    both human and animal firstborn.
He made Egypt sit up and take notice,
    confronted Pharaoh and his servants with miracles.
Yes, he struck down great nations,
    he slew mighty kings—
Sihon king of the Amorites, also Og of Bashan—
    every last one of the Canaanite kings!
Then he turned their land over to Israel,
    a gift of good land to his people.

13-18 God, your name is eternal,
    God, you’ll never be out-of-date.
God stands up for his people,
    God holds the hands of his people.
The gods of the godless nations are mere trinkets,
    made for quick sale in the markets:
Chiseled mouths that can’t talk,
    painted eyes that can’t see,
Carved ears that can’t hear—
    dead wood! cold metal!
Those who make and trust them
    become like them.

19-21 Family of Israel, bless God!
    Family of Aaron, bless God!
Family of Levi, bless God!
    You who fear God, bless God!
Oh, blessed be God of Zion,
    First Citizen of Jerusalem!
Hallelujah!