There is something breathtaking about clear-glass water that reflects the objects around it. The stillness speaks of peace and order in a way that seems to speak of a nature as it calls us to be. On the calm reflection of the undisturbed surface the water’s surroundings come through clearly.
In Sunday School this past week we continued our Evangelism in Acts series. This week we were in Acts 4:5-22, reading about Peter’s trial before the Sanhedrin (Jewish ruling council). Peter had healed a lame beggar and this was causing uproar in Jerusalem. The Sanhedrin seemed to fear that the followers of Christ were going to incite a riot, bringing the Roman Legions down upon the city in violent suppression. So, they called Peter to account for his actions. Peter had nothing to say other than what Christ was doing through him. You see, Acts 4:13 points to the power of the Peter. It had nothing to do with his training, per se. He was a simple fisherman.
Yet there was something that made Peter different. Somehow he had healed a man who had been unable to use his legs for decades. He spoke with a courage and conviction that people did not expect. Yet what they knew about him and John was that they “had been with Jesus.” The schooling that these men had received was outside the normal Jewish route. They had been with the man they claimed gave them their power. They reflected the life of this man in all its clarity. These men were just an image of someone else.
The power of Jesus’ words were felt in Mark 1:27 in a way that Peter mirrors. Notice that Acts 4:13 does not focus on the power of Peter and John to heal the lame man, but it focuses on the courage that Peter had to stand up to the Sanhedrin. The power of Christ fills them with the courage to stand in front of those who wish them harm. This passage teaches us about the importance of having a relationship with Jesus that produces a godly courage to stand before those opposed to Christ.
The Bible never speaks of cowardice as a virtue. The Spirit that believers in Christ are given produces courage, not fear (2 Timothy 1:7). Knowing Christ causes us to reflect Christ. We become a place for people to see the face of Christ because of our relational proximity to him. Our words and actions represent the One who holds all things together. However, without spending time with him then we become a poor imitator of a second-hand image.
It is easy to share about those you know the best.