I ended part 1 of this series by asking and answering a question. “So what is believing? It is believing everything that the New Testament teaches us about Christ, the Old Testament, and how to live our lives.” In this blog I want to lay a foundation to build upon the teachings of the New Testament. I think that Acts 2 is a good spot to start. This will help us lay a foundation to three essential parts of a Christian life.
Acts 2: 36-41
36 “Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”37 Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?” 38 And Peter said to them, “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 For the promise is for you and for your children and for all who are far off, everyone whom the Lord our God calls to himself.” 40 And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” 41 So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.
To get a better understanding of what is going on here , it would be best if you went and read all of Acts chapter 2. But I will try to give a little background to what is going on here. The disciples were told by Jesus not to depart from Jerusalem, but wait on the promise from the Father. So the disciples went to Jerusalem, and with some others waited in an upper room for this promise of the Holy Spirit. While devoting themselves to prayer, they suddenly began to speak in other languages as the Spirit gave the utterance. While this was going on, some other people heard them speaking in their own language, telling about the mighty works of God. Since these people were not of their native tongue but speaking their language, they asked what was going on. Others were saying that they were just drunk with wine. So, Peter stands up and tells the crowd about the prophesy of Joel.(That in the last days God will pour out his spirit on all flesh) Then, Peter tells them how Jesus has been exalted to the right hand of God. Now, we are picking up at verse 36, which is above.
Peter declares to them that Jesus is Lord. After hearing about Jesus and hearing the disciples(which were already believers) speaking in their language, they asked Peter what shall we do? Peter gives them an outline of what the christain life should consist of: Repentance, being baptized, and recieving the gift of the Holy Spirit. These are the three essential parts of a Christian life in which I spoke about earlier.
Also, above is a great example of witnessing. Peter first tells these people about Jesus. Then after “being cut to the heart” they ask the question, “what shall we do?”… Notice, they were cut to the heart after hearing about Jesus. Does this mean they believed and then asked what’s next? It sure seems that way. If they didn’t believe what Peter was saying, then why would they ask what they should do? So, in this passage of scripture, we see what to say when telling about Jesus. Then, when they become curious, tell them about the rest of the Christian life.
In the next blogs, I am going to break down each of the three things mentioned by Peter. I am going to talk about whether or not they have to be completed to make it to heaven using scripture. So, don’t think this series is over yet.