“When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realised that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus” (Acts 4:13).
We like things that make sense. One plus one equals two, and all’s right with the world. But it can be confronting when something doesn’t appear to add up.
The educated men (rulers, elders, teachers of the law, the high priest etc) would have done their research on Peter and John as they sought reasons to silence them.
Initially fishermen by trade, one could expect their skillset and expertise to be confined to that profession. But then they hung around the itinerant Jesus, who challenged long-held traditions and understandings and was crucified for his troubles. Reports had been made of his resurrection, but he had since disappeared off the face of the earth.
Still, his influence seemed to be spreading. Peter and John were going around healing people using Jesus’ name! Now, these same men stood before the hierarchy and spoke with boldness. They even had the audacity and courage to quote Scripture, naming Jesus as the one who the psalmist referenced … in front of some of the same men who orchestrated Jesus’ crucifixion.
So how did they go from being ordinary, uneducated fishermen to men of courage who performed miracles and spoke with authority? Well, they did spend time — a lot of time — with Jesus. He seemed to have a profound and life-changing impact on these two extraordinary men … and they weren’t (and aren’t) the only ones!
How does spending time with Jesus impact you and influence your words and actions?
Dear God, thank you for all the ways we get to spend time together. You share your love and refresh my soul in many different ways. You show me paths to walk and people to connect with. I look forward to what you have in store for me today! In Jesus’ Name, I pray, Amen.