Acts 3:12-26 Study Guide

Print this page, and then fill in the blanks with words taken from the indicated verses:

v12 — Men of ____________, why do you marvel…

v13 — The God of ________________, ___________ and ___________, the God of _______ fathers…

v14 — But _______ disowned the Holy and Righteous One…

v17 — And now, _______________, I know that _______ acted in ignorance, just as _______  ___________ did also…

v18 — But the things which God _________________________ by the mouth of all the _______________…

Question: According to v18 above, was what they had witnessed a fulfillment of promises to Israel, or something hidden by God waiting to be exposed at this time?

v19 — ________________ therefore and _____________ so that your sins may be ______________ so that the _________________  ____  ______________________ may come from the presence of the Lord.

Note: If you have the tools, make a study of the Greek words Luke used in the first three blanks above, along with the Greek word for “forgiveness” used in Acts 2:38.

Question: How would the triple blank in the last half of the verse above be understood by Peter’s audience?

v20 — and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for ______,

v21 — whom Heaven must receive until the period of ________________ of all _____________ about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy ______________…

Question: How would the double blank in the first part of this verse have been understood by Peter’s audience?

Question: What dispensation is in view in this verse — a prophesied one, or an unprophesied one?

v22 – ___________ said, ‘The Lord shall raise up a _______________ like me from your _________________”…

v23 — Every soul that does not heed that ________________ shall be utterly destroyed from among the _______________…

v24 — And likewise, all the ______________ who have spoken, from Samuel and his successors onward, also announced these days…

Question: What days had all the prophets announced?  An earthly kingdom for Israel, or a generic ’kingdom in the hearts of men’?

v25 — It is you who are the ________ of the prophets, and of the covenant God made with your _______________, saying to __________________, ‘And in your seed shall all the families of the earth be blessed.’

v26 — For you _____________ God raised up His Servant and sent Him to bless ________ …

Final Thought Question:  Did Peter at any time refer to people that came before Abraham, such as Noah or Adam?  Why?

There are, of course, many things in this passage that are weighty theological matters — and I have roundly ignored them.  It’s not that I attach no importance to issues of sin, forgiveness, repentance, faith (v16), or salvation.  But those matters are beside the point when we are trying to demonstrate that Peter’s message at this point in Luke’s narrative is all about promises to Israel concerning an earthly kingdom, and not at all about another dispensation still hidden in God’s heart.

Bible commentators like to refer to the believers in this community described by Luke as the “Jerusalem Church”.  That is both true and false.  The New Testament word for ”church” is ekklesia, meaning “called-out ones”.  Refer to the specifics of the two messages we have heard from Peter.  These believers are indeed being called out — they’ve been warned to “be saved from this perverse generation” (2:40), meaning the politics and theology that was specifically responsible for murdering Israel’s Messiah.  But this community of Hebrew believers is being called into a different program, one which will sadly be set aside in a short time.  Today we, on the other hand, are also called out of a perverse generation (a much broader world-system than those in Jerusalem) and are being called into a program where there is no difference between Jew and Gentile, and which ends in a promise of heaven, not a promise of an earthly kingdom.

Yes, God is still very much at work wooing Israel to repent of a specific sin at this juncture in Acts.  Peter, never one to soft-pedal anything, has had some very special listeners this time… but that’s another blog post!

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