A New Name (Pt2)
Background Story: Jesus was crucified, buried and rose on the third day. Jesus had instructed his disciples to wait in Jerusalem for the gift He would send. A group of followers waited in a home when the Holy Spirit came in like flames of fire and filled each person. After this occurred, Peter got up and gave this amazing speech to the crowd nearby.
Read Acts 2: 22-24, 36-40
(Peter Speaking) “Fellow Israelites, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know. 23 This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.
36 “Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Messiah.”
37 When the people heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and the other apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”
38 Peter replied, “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. 39 The promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off—for all whom the Lord our God will call.”
40 With many other words he warned them; and he pleaded with them, “Save yourselves from this corrupt generation.” 41 Those who accepted his message were baptized, and about three thousand were added to their number that day.
Big Idea: We live out our Christian walk through the power of the Holy Spirit.
When we first meet Simon Peter in Luke 5, he is anything but Peter “the rock” that Jesus later calls him. Simon Peter is going about his normal life as a fisherman and Jesus comes on the scene with a miracle. From the outsider’s view, Simon Peter was a simple man with a quick temper, but Jesus saw something different. In response to the miracle, Simon Peter, “got down at the feet of Jesus. He said, ‘Go away from me, Lord, because I am a sinful man’ (Luke 5:8). “Then Jesus said to Simon, ‘Do not be afraid. From now on you will fish for men.’ When they came to land with their boats, they left everything and followed Jesus” (Luke 5:10-11).
When Jesus saw Simon Peter for the first time pulling in those fishing nets, do you think Jesus could also see the changed Peter preaching to thousands at the same time? Could Jesus see a side by side image of who Simon Peter was at that moment and the man Peter would become? How did Peter go from the fisherman in Luke 5 to the preacher of Acts 2?
Peter answers the question for us in Acts 2:38 when he tells the crowd, “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.” For Peter and for each of us, we cannot fulfill our calling and become the person God has created us to be without true repentance and the power of the Holy Spirit. When we try to live as a Christian in our own strength and power, we just end up exhausted and frustrated. The Bible says, the Holy Spirit stays with us and counsels us (Jn 14:16-17), helps us know God (1 Corinthians 2:10-11), helps us to pray (Romans 8:26-27), convicts us of sin (John 16:7-8), helps us change (Galatians 5:22-25), and much more. Pray today bringing God a repentant heart and ask for the Holy Spirit to help you walk in the new life and identity God is calling you to.