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The restoring

Acts 3:19-20 & 3:26

19 "Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” 20 "and that He may send Jesus Christ, who was preached to you before,"

     26 "To you first, God, having raised up His Servant Jesus, sent Him to bless you, in turning away everyone [of you] from your iniquities.”

    Peter was explaining to the Jews who witnessed the healing of the man’s ankles at the door of the temple, how this healing took place. He provoked them in verse 19 to repent and be converted so that they might have their sins blotted out and receive times of refreshing; and so that God might send Jesus Christ to them. However, in verse 26, Peter states that God already sent Jesus to bless them by turning them away from their iniquities…

    Peter was explaining salvation- Everyone on the planet has already been saved because God has already raised up His Son to bless all mankind by turning them from their iniquities. It is therefore up to each one to repent and be converted- ie, to accept the salvation provided by Jesus.

Verse 20 is not referring to the first advent of Jesus Christ in the flesh. It is referring to the second coming of Christ- the rapture and ultimate rein of our Lord on Earth. For verse 21 states that heaven must receive Jesus until the times of restoration of all things. These verses are, in spirit conjoined with 2 Peter 3:9- that God is waiting for everyone who will be saved to enter the kingdom. The sooner everyone accepts the blessing already provided by God through Jesus Christ, the sooner everything will be restored. 

As the man at the door to the temple was restored so that he could walk on his own two feet, so everyone must receive spiritual restoration that they may walk on their own two spiritual feet. The first restoration is the key to the second. The first restoration gives the ability to walk and the second gives the destination of the walk. The man that received soundness in his feet and ankles at first walked and leapt and then entered the temple. It is stultifying that he had been hitherto unable to enter into true worship of the Lord (as dictated by Mosaic law at the time) until he could walk correctly. This physical vicissitude enabled the man to manifest the deep desire of his heart- to worship God. In the same way, the first advent of Jesus Christ brought us, and all mankind, the blessing of turning us from our sin- that which cripples our ability from walking correctly; the second advent of Christ presents us directly into the presence and true worship of the Holy One. As this man was engaged in such ostensibly joyous activity, he was physically accompanied by Peter and John who had given him the ability to manifest his heart and a place wherein to do so. We too, once our ability to walk out the desires of our hearts is restored will one day be accompanied by He who has given us both the ability and the destination. It is His accompaniment that gives us the authority and protects us from would be slanderers as did Peter and John’s accompaniment of the formerly lame man give him authority to walk in the temple and covered him with protection from those who would spit slanderous words against him questioning the validity of his evident restoration.

            Let this message speak to your heart, that even though you may have your salvation in hand, salvation- the ability to walk is not the end- it is in fact a means to the end. Your salvation, might also be questioned at times but the one who restored you will testify to those judgmental hearts that you who were dead have been in fact made alive.

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