Cut to the Heart

 Genesis 2; Matthew 2; Ezra 2; Acts 2

Pocket Sermon from Peter
Peter gives us what I refer to as a “pocket sermon” (something to keep closely with us for reuse at any given moment) and summarizes the Gospels in Acts 2:22-24.

22 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man attested to you by God with mighty works and wonders and signs that God did through him in your midst, as you yourselves know— 23 this Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. 24 God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.

The Gospel summary:

  1. God endorses Jesus through his ability to perform miracles
  2. Jesus is crucified
  3. Jesus conquers death, thus proving his deity

These are the kind of verses that succinctly tell the story of Jesus as the messiah from his earthly miracles through death, burial, and resurrection.  Memorizing verses like this are a great way to be ready to share Biblical truth with those who do not yet believe, as well as a great reminder as to why we follow this man Jesus, God in the flesh.

After Peter’s sermon, we’re told that those who heard it were “cut to the heart” and they asked “What shall we do?” (Acts 2:37). Why were they cut to the heart? Because that’s what God’s word does:

“For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)

When we hear the word of God through the Bible something supernatural occurs and God is literally speaking to us.  How great it is that our creator cares enough to communicate with us today!

As for Peter’s audience and me as well, sin deems us “guilty” for crucifying Jesus. What shall we do then?

“Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)

Would you consider praying for an opportunity to share the Gospel story with someone today so that they too may be forgiven, and their souls saved for an eternity?