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Acts Chapter 4:13-24

Cross the Bridge / David McGee
The Truth Network Radio
April 20, 2021 1:00 am

Acts Chapter 4:13-24

Cross the Bridge / David McGee

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April 20, 2021 1:00 am

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religion has always failed but what's really twisted as most people see Christianity they define that as that that we can reach up to God people get beat up they get in situations and they want to come to Jesus and we start giving them a rule book you gotta do this you gotta do that you can't look like that can act like this you can't do this when the simple thing that we need to do is take their hand and put it in the hand of Jesus say this is Jesus this is my Savior this is who changed me and he'll make a difference in your life that's what we need to do but so often we try to start placing walls between people in Jesus tell them why they can't really have access why they shouldn't be having access and they gotta do this and they gotta do that and they gotta do the other so glad that I now am not religious but I have a relationship with Jesus there's a difference welcome to cross the bridge with David McGee David is the senior pastor of the bridge in Kernersville, North Carolina today in the studio we have D.A.

Brown one of David McGee's associate pastors and we're glad to have him bring us some insight right before David McGee teaches. Hey Bob, do you know that there's a difference between religion and a relationship with God today pastor David is going to take his time to explain the difference and why it's important to understand as he continues in the book of Acts chapter 4 sounds good brother so here's David McGee with his teaching boldness. We're in Acts chapter 4 verse 13 and kind of bring you up to speed Peter and John have been used by God to heal a lame man and so now the religious authorities are kinda in an uproar and they've told John and Peter that they need to come before him and explain what happened and explain how they did it and so this is what's going on with Peter and John and the Sanhedrin the council the Jewish religious authorities and they brought Peter and John not to congratulate them not to encourage them but actually to rebuke them so we're gonna see some parallels in our lives and in life today to this time and so we'll see once again that this book has incredible applications for our lives today. Let's pray Lord we thank you for this book thank you for the Bible and I thank you for each and every person that's here this morning and ask that you would speak to them speak to them through your word speak to them in that still small voice because Lord we know that you desire to speak to your people and Lord I ask that not only would we hear what you were saying but it would go to our hearts and then it would change us Lord we know that you have the ability you have the strength to change us and we can walk out differently than we walked in.

Lord that's our prayer that's the cry of our heart may you open our hearts to your word and open your word to our hearts in Jesus' name and everybody said amen amen. So we're in Acts chapter 4 we'll pick it up in verse 13 it says now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men they marveled and they realized that they had been with Jesus that's an interesting verse we're seeing here that God is using Peter and John Jesus is using Peter and John but what these rabbis and these spiritual religious leaders understood was that they had not been to the rabbinical schools there were Jewish schools of that day they were called yeshivas we talked about this a little bit before but basically some went through elementary they took to the best of those they allowed them to go to the equivalent of the junior high and then they took the best of those and then those went to the senior high if you will and they took the best of those and some of those were invited to be trained by a rabbi Peter and John weren't we see that because they weren't following a rabbi when Jesus came up to him and said hey follow me. Now this is important to understand because in this day and age somehow we've gotten to the point once again as they were here that only people who are highly trained and highly specialized can share the Word of God with us and that happens on two fronts number one it happens in the pulpits that we think well you know that if a guy has a doctorate he's been in school nine to ten years man that's impressive he's really ready to teach the Word of God but the question is has he been with Jesus that's the question see because all across America pulpits are filled with people who have not been with Jesus now I'm not anti-education I've studied the Bible for years and years I will continue to study the Bible while there is breath in my body but I think when we get to a point of saying okay this guy is of God because he has a degree this guy is not of God because he does not have a degree man we've slipped off the track. They've been with Jesus for three years Jesus who wrote the book. They had some answers they had some things to share and they had been with Jesus. That's so important you have to spend time with Jesus you get to spend time with Jesus and maybe you don't have the time or the opportunity to pray several hours every day but spend time with the Lord maybe driving to work or driving from work or standing in line at Walmart or at a stoplight you can take time to spend time with the Lord that's so important it's so important because then you have something to share and even if you're untrained in theology you still can share the love of God and how he's changed your life and it's interesting I use the past tense here they realize they had been with Jesus they're still with Jesus Jesus is right there don't you know he's looking he's the one that worked through Peter and John and healed this man and you know that at that moment you know Jesus is standing back going that's my boy Peter he's you know he had some problems he messed up a little bit but look at look at what he's doing now so they got thrown in jail we saw the first part of the chapter to be honest I'm thinking that's probably that probably wasn't Peter's first time in jail I'm just going out on a limb I'm just guessing here but just watching the brashness of Peter and understanding that fishermen didn't have that good of a reputation at that time and you know the sad thing here again is because they'd gotten thrown in jail Peter and John would have been disqualified from leadership in a lot of churches today I can't have him lead in church he'd been in jail wow I mean think say it slowly think about it Peter disqualified from leadership in the church man we'd have missed out huh praise God God changes lives amen verse 14 and seeing the man who had been healed standing with them they could say nothing against it see here's the deal you can't argue with spiritual fruit you cannot here's a guy that used to not be able to walk and now I can walk and you can't argue with that I mean you can but you kinda look silly and notice also it says the man is standing with them I like that because the man who got healed he didn't think well you are going before the Jewish authorities you know what I think I can't make this meeting I hope it works out for you but he stood with them that's so important why because as Christians we need to stand with each other even when there's a problem even when there's a trial even when somebody falls or fails of standing with them go hey man I'm with you I'm standing with you I'm praying for you of doing that why because Christianity is not supposed to be with fair be filled with fair weather friends but stand by people in ministry through disagreements and even when they're in trouble in verse 15 but when they had commanded them to go outside go aside out of the council they conferred among themselves verse 16 saying why shall we do to these men for indeed that a notable miracle has been done through them as evident to all who dwell in Jerusalem and we cannot deny it notice something their unbelief has nothing to do with the evidence there is a man that used to not be able to walk the canal wall and they still are not believing water mention this well I think sometimes we mistakenly believe we can academically talk somebody into accepting Jesus as their savior you can deal with objections but you cannot get somebody to cross that line simply by dealing with their objections now we should have discussions we should encourage discussions but understand unbelief comes from the hardness of the heart of man see because we realize that at the moment we say we do believe then we are required to take action I do believe in God that Jesus came to die for me on the cross okay what do you do with that now and so unbelief has to do more with the heart of man then with the presentation of the facts you understand God could could come to this earth and demonstrate his love to a people in a in a physical way and they would still say I still rejected as a matter fact he did just that he came to the earth in the form of his son demonstrated his love for us by dying for us and they're still people that reject that not for lack of evidence but because the hardness of the heart we need to understand that the heart human heart it wants to run from God not run to God verse 17 but so that it spreads no further among the people let us severely threaten them that from now on they speak to no man in this name how sad you see how twisted religion gets I mean look at this these guys were supposed to be the purveyors that the people who are giving truth and they're presented with truth they go okay how do we cover this up that how twisted religion gets understand I define religion different than Christianity Christianity is that God has reached down to man in the form of Jesus Christ in the form of the cross so that man can have access to God religion on the other hand tries to gain access to God through their own good works in their own strength in their own power religion has always failed but what's really twisted as most people see Christianity they define that as that that we can reach up to God first life lesson religion is the worst thing that ever happened to Christianity pastor what do you mean by that people get beat up they get in situations and they want to come to Jesus and we start giving them a rule book we gotta do this you gotta do that you can't look like that can act like this you can't do this when the simple thing that we need to do is take their hand and put it in the hand of Jesus say this is Jesus this is my Savior this is who changed me and he'll make a difference in your life that's what we need to do but so often we try to start placing walls between people in Jesus tell them why they can't really have access while they shouldn't be having access and they gotta do this and they gotta do that they gotta do the other so glad that and now I'm not religious but I have a relationship with Jesus there's a difference now it's interesting here because notice we're inside the meeting just a little side bit here we're inside the meeting how do we know what's going on inside this meeting it's kinda interesting Luke who wrote the book of Acts also wrote the Gospel of Luke we believe that he did that in part a lot of scholars believe that he did that in part for a defense of Paul in front of Roman authorities so he not only put together history of Jesus but also the history of the early church and there's pretty good evidence for this so how did he gather this was Luke in this meeting no Luke would not have been in this meeting Luke was a gentile he was a not a Jewish person but when Luke was writing the book of Acts as well as the Gospels he went around interviewing people in and writing stuff down who would he have interviewed to get this information well there's two real good possibilities one is Nicodemus remember Nicodemus is the guy that came to Jesus in John chapter 3 kinda asking him what the deal was and Jesus said you must be born again and then another very likely candidate is Joseph of Arimathea we know that Joseph was on the council because we're told in Mark 1543 that he was on the council so he would have been on the inside scoop and then probably would have told Luke what was going on you're listening to pastor David McGee on Cross the Bridge he'll be right back with more in just a moment but I want to remind you of the free resources available to you on there's a team of hundreds of people that will pray for somebody to be saved you have a loved one that needs to know Jesus as Savior you need people to pray for him you need someone to present God's Word to him every day we're presenting God's Word to him here on Cross the Bridge with pastor David McGee we can pray for them as well just by simply going to and click on the pray for the lost button all you need to do is put in the first names of the people you love that need to know Jesus as Savior click on submit and immediately hundreds of people begin praying for your lost loved ones what an awesome way to bring your loved ones to Jesus here's a word from associate pastor DA Brown hey guys we want to take just a minute to pray for some cities in our listening audience specifically Ashland Oregon and Baker City Brookings, Canyonville, Cave Junction Cloverdale and Colton Lord we thank you for these cities and everyone listening Lord we pray that you would pour out your spirit on these broadcast audiences Father we pray that pastors would have wisdom in these cities and how to love their communities Lord I pray that people would put their trust in you God I pray that you would give the governmental leaders wisdom and discernment that you would protect these cities Father that there be peace in these cities and Lord that your word would be high and lifted up in Jesus name Amen. Amen. Thank you brother and now let's get back to David McGee as he continues teaching verse by verse. Now verse 18 they call them back in so they called them and command them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus yeah this is going to prove to be real effective isn't it man you can't keep these guys quiet they're filled with God's word they're filled with God's love they're filled with God's power and you can't keep a godly man or woman down you can't say well you can't you know you can't say anything and understand as you look at this maybe maybe in some way you look at this story and go you know pastor I just don't know if I'm ever gonna I don't know if God will ever use me to heal a lame man maybe he will maybe he won't but he does desire to use you to accomplish the greatest miracle the greatest miracle is when somebody that doesn't know Jesus comes to a saving faith in Jesus and not just their legs are healed their heart and their soul are healed to me that's a far greater miracle it's a far greater miracle we have the opportunity to do that and God will give us the boldness to do that verse 19 but Peter and John answered and said to them whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God you judge for we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard I want you to know something Peter and John are very respectful of the authorities here pastor David why are you pointing it out well I want you to notice they're gonna disobey them they're not gonna obey what these guys said but in their disobedience they are respectful why are you pointing it out because occasionally I'll hear of a ministry or another believer who seems to major in bashing other ministries or bashing the government or bashing the president it's like you know is that really what we're supposed to be doing is that really what we're supposed to be taking our time and our energy to do and when they do it there's a real disrespect for authority and I don't think that's biblical I know it's not biblical now let me let me say this is the president or anybody any man you know sent me an email or gave me a phone call and said you gotta quit telling people about Jesus guess what I am going to disobey that order I'll do it respectfully but I will disobey it so you can disobey and at the same time be respectful and I think that's what we are to do when we see them doing it here and he says for we cannot but speak the things which we've seen and heard now it's interesting Jesus sometimes when he healed people would tell them don't tell anybody say anything to anybody it's kind of interesting and every time I see him saying that the people went and told people now Jesus has told us to tell people and we sit there quietly and don't say anything to anybody and that's wrong we think of sin in terms of the things that we do but sin sometimes is what you don't do and if you're not sharing your faith if you're not telling other people about Jesus in love you're wrong it's something we're supposed to be doing now I've heard all the rebuttals and arguments in the debate well pastor David now mine is a silent witness I don't say anything I just prefer to let my light shine bright before people yet the only problem with that is honey your light ain't that bright I mean you know even Jesus himself used words well now the Son of God used words guess what we should probably be doing using words and I don't see anywhere in the Bible this theological proof text for a silent witness sorry I don't buy it if that used to be your excuse I just pulled the chair out from under you in love I mean but the silent witness thing is not biblical it's not biblical God will give you the boldness I know it's scary sometimes verse 21 so when they had further threatened them they let them go finding no way of punishing them because of the people since they all glorified God for what had been done again look how twisted their their hearts are just so hard and there was fruit there understand any time God is working in the midst of a situation there's gonna be people that stand off to the side I call them naysayers and you know and say well this is what's wrong with it and this is what's wrong with it and that's what's wrong but you know I can stand beside an apple tree and if I'm telling you it's not an apple tree but you look over there and there's apples all over the tree guess what you're gonna that's an apple tree and it seems interestingly enough that there's those that God will use in incredible ways and then there's those that stand off to the side and point their fingers and point out what's wrong with what God's doing with them I point this out because obviously God is using this fellowship to accomplish incredible things and we're always gonna have naysayers don't be surprised when you have some ging ging ging ging ging but you know what that will always be that will always happen that when God does something spiritually significant with a people group there will be people standing off to the side that nothing of significance spiritually is going on that point their fingers back and say oh stop that you're doing it wrong you're doing it wrong be careful with that verse 22 talks about the man says for the man was over 40 years old on whom this miracle of healing had been performed over 40 years old again we talked before that this man had been at that gate for that long for most of those years and Jesus probably walked through that gate and didn't heal him.

Why? It wasn't his time. God has times.

He has seasons. He has appointments if you will and God in the form of Jesus walked past this man knowing that at some point in the future this man would not only be healed but would be healed to bring glory to the God glory to God and to give power to the early church if you're waiting on a healing or waiting for God to do something in your life be patient because it's his time not your time it's his time. The sad thing about it is looking at these leaders they're so close but so far I mean they're talking with Peter and John who spent years with Jesus they could have just as easily said look you know what we we think we've been wrong about this tell us what we need to do. Tell us how we need to follow Jesus and it's heartbreaking to consider that some people come here so close.

Turn around and walk out. May that always break our hearts. May that always sadden us. You know they'd gotten so caught up in their formality and their rituals that they forgot what it was all about. You know as I was looking through this chapter I thought man how different Judaism would be today had they accepted Jesus as the Messiah but there was a dividing coming to Judaism and let me let me be clear I have tremendous respect for my Jewish roots Christianity was bird than Jewish roots I was like 20 some years old before I realized that Jesus was actually a Jew. I grew up just being told that the Jews were people who killed Jesus so much to my amazement you know Jew Jesus was born into a Jewish family was a Jewish man and I've discovered a lot of truths going back and looking into the Hebrew scriptures and look into the Hebraic traditions but if a Jewish person rejects Jesus as the Messiah they're not going to heaven. They're not going to heaven and what they're doing here in this midst is they are rejecting Jesus but lest pride enter in understand there's a lot of people in churches today that reject the salvation of Jesus it's sad but it's true.

Verse 23 and it says being let go they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them. I like that they go back to their their companions their company that's a good thing they're going back to touch base with those who probably been praying for them touching base and when you get in trouble when you hit a snag that's what you should do too. Touch base with people that care about you. Build relationships with with people here so that even when you hit a snag there's that relationship already established. You want to be pouring into people as well as them pouring back to you. I think a lot of times we hit snags because we just expect people keep pouring into us, pouring into us, pouring into us, pouring into us we never offer to pour back out.

That is not a healthy Christian relationship. Verse 24 they heard that they raised their voice to God with one accord and said Lord you are God who made heaven and earth and the sea and all that is in them. Wow what an interesting response. I want you to notice what they did not do. Probably getting ready to step on some toes. They didn't gather and say well we need to make some picket signs we need to march around the Sanhedrin and do this and do that and the other. They prayed.

Why? What was the one thing they could do to make the biggest difference? To pray. See we need to be careful that we don't get distracted by all this other side trail stuff and we remember what has eternal significance. Prayer has eternal significance. Sharing your faith has eternal significance. Friend do you know for sure that your sins have been forgiven?

You can know right now. I want to lead you in a short simple prayer simply telling God you're sorry and asking Him to help you to live for Him. Please pray this prayer with me out loud right now. Dear Jesus I believe you died for me that I could be forgiven and I believe you were raised from the dead that I could have a new life and I've done wrong things I have sinned and I'm sorry please forgive me of all those things please give me the power to live for you all of my days in Jesus name.

Amen. Friend if you prayed that prayer according to the Bible you've been forgiven you've been born again so congratulations friend you just made the greatest decision that you will ever make. God bless you. If you prayed that prayer with David for the first time we'd love to hear from you. You can visit to receive our first steps package with helpful resources to help you begin your walk with Christ or you can write to Cross the Bridge at P.O. Box 12 515 Winston-Salem North Carolina 27117 and share how God is working your life. You know the Bible tells us that the free gift of God is eternal life in Jesus Christ our Lord but it does cost for us to come and bring that message to you and to others in your neighborhood through radio through the internet and through the mobile technologies that God has gifted us to be able to use. So if you'd like to support this ministry please go to click on the donate button and ask God how much he would have you give either on a one-time basis or continuing basis each month to help ensure that the teaching of God's Word continues to go out through Cross the Bridge. Thank you so much. Well DA before we go what are some ways that we can bless our listeners? Each day you can wake up with encouragement from Pastor David through the Word of God with his email devotional, life lessons to consider, a daily reading plan, and a thought to meditate on throughout your day from the heart of David McGee. Those are terrific and it's easy and it's free so folks sign up today at Thanks again for listening and join us next time as David McGee continues teaching verse by verse in the book of Acts.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-11-28 09:51:34 / 2023-11-28 10:02:04 / 11

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