“Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
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?” 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. 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.” And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” So those who received his word were baptized, and there were added that day about three thousand souls.”
The world we live in has a lot of different narratives to offer us. Some are positive that we feel will lead us to success. Some are negative that we feel will lead us to hardship. No one wants to walk down a path they know will bring them hardship and pain. People have a desire to be successful. To matter in this world. People want to find truth, so they can build a healthy and comfortable life with their family and friends.
Of course, I believe there is a perfect and holy answer to build your life around, one that will give purpose and honor. However, the culture we live in pushes false narratives of hope and justice. They encourage shifting blame onto others. We are encouraged to escape responsibility and deflect from our flaws and failures. This only leads to brokenness that destroys families, demolishes hope, fosters loneliness, and consumes a person with darkness.
Praise God for verse thirty-eight, “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.” All we have to do to find the one and only perfect and holy solution is to repent. We must take responsibility for our sins. We must repent to the holy God through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We must be baptized. Through our repentance and forgiveness, we receive the Holy Spirit to guide us through the craziness of life. If you haven’t, repent and be baptized. Trust Jesus, walking with Him daily, and allow the Holy Spirit to lead you in all that you do. This is the only narrative worth pursuing.
- What does it mean to repent?
- What is the significance of baptism that it would be one of the two things Peter prescribed to those willing to follow Christ?
- Can you point to a time when you have followed through with each of these things?
Highlight – what words or phrases jump out at you
Explain – what does the passage mean?
Apply – how does the passage intersect with your life today?
Respond – how is God leading you to respond?
Pastor to Students and Young Adults