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Silver and Gold

Silver and Gold

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Silver and Gold

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  1. Silver and Gold Peter Fitch, St. Croix Vineyard Sunday, September 13, 2015

  2. A great story . . . Acts 3:1 Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the ninth hour, the hour of prayer. 2 And a man who had been lame from his mother’s womb was being carried along, whom they used to set down every day at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, in order to beg alms of those who were entering the temple. 3 When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he began asking to receive alms. 

  3. Acts 3: 1-10 4 But Peter, along with John, fixed his gaze on him and said, “Look at us!” 5 And he began to give them his attention, expecting to receive something from them. 6 But Peter said, “I do not possess silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you: In the name of Jesus Christ the Nazarene—walk!” 7 And seizing him by the right hand, he raised him up; and immediately his feet and his ankles were strengthened.

  4. Acts 3: 1-10 8 With a leap he stood upright and began to walk; and he entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. 9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God; 10 and they were taking note of him as being the one who used to sit at the Beautiful Gate of the temple to beg alms, and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.

  5. Silver and Gold . . . • What the guy wanted; what they had to give  • it was silver and gold, just of a different sort  • It’s always like this--what is the best you can give? That is silver and gold • sometimes not too much; but genuine care for individuals often better than a handout of some sort

  6. What did they not give?

  7. Surges and Patterns • Story shows us something of NT era just after Pentecost  • Union St. Baptist: “Cults, New Age and the Vineyard” • Today, I have seen some of this • But I think there's a pattern that's true in all acts of care-giving  • You see a need, your heart opens with both faith and compassion; you stretch out your hand to help and you find that you are not alone

  8. Examples? • My Dad's memorial service  • One of the healing stories • A thousand kinds of ministry  • (attributed to Goethe) quote on commitment

  9. W. H. Murray "Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back-- Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth that ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then Providence moves too. All sorts of things occur to help one that would never otherwise have occurred.

  10. W. H. Murray A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one's favor all manner of unforeseen incidents and meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamed would have come his way. Whatever you can do, or dream you can do, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Begin it now."  The Scottish Himalayas Expedition, 1951

  11. Insights • None of us do this perfectly (nor should we think we can) but many of us have had an experience that has been something like this  • I also like the fact that these guys were just going to a normal church service, not expecting too much, and they ended up having a blast--they were ready for something more to happen 

  12. And, a secret • Further down the chapter, Peter responds to the astonishment of the onlookers • He explains that they are just normal people working in concert with God's Spirit out of their belief in Jesus and His resurrection • Then he tells them what to do . . .

  13. Acts 3: 19-21 19 Therefore repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord; 20 and that He may send Jesus, the Christ appointed for you, 21 whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of His holy prophets from ancient time.

  14. In his famous sermon . . . Acts 2 38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.” • He seems to be restating things in an equivalent way—therefore, “gift of the Holy Spirit” and “times of refreshing” seem very closely linked!

  15. Why is this important? • Confusion over terms like “baptism in the Spirit” • Paul and Luke use this idea differently • For Paul, it seems to be “initiation”; for Luke it seems closer to “empowering” • Ingo’s story • It’s both and can be received over and over again

  16. Application • Clearly, the refreshing that we experience is to fill us with something powerful to give away • So whatever silver and gold we have, whatever conditions exist to allow God's riches to participate as well, it's good to be ready to see the need. Open your heart, take action by getting involved with a real person in a real way, allow God to bring His own level of participation and help