Acts 3:1-10 – “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. 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. 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.” NASU
I like making Faith Declarations and embrace the truth of Scripture where we call those things that are not as though they were as seen in Romans 4:17. If we read the context of that passage we quickly realize a couple of important points that are germane to our discussion. First, it is addressing Abraham and God’s Promise that he would become the father of many nations even though he was old and Sarah was beyond childbearing years. That promise was not a reality in the natural and could not be but by faith, Abraham could call them real. But, if you examine it closely you will also note that verse 17, God tells Abraham I HAVE MADE YOU the father of many nations. He was not, in the natural but God says it is already done, past tense. It reminds us that it is God who gives life to the dead and that clearly includes a dead womb. It reveals that it is God who calls into being that which does not exist. But, it does exist in God for He is the creator of all things. The issue in our attempting to call things that do not exist into being is that our Faith Declaration must align itself with what God has said and we are Agreeing with God. We are not creating we are proclaiming our confidence in what He has promised.
That brings me to the text passage where Peter meets the lame man at the Gate Beautiful. This man was expectant and dependent on others for his livelihood and even his transportation. He was NEEDY and unable to provide for himself so he was relegated to a life of Dependency. When Peter saw him and the Holy Spirit quickened Peter’s heart that day, he said to the lame man, “Look at or on us!” That would be somewhat of an unusual demand because most people giving alms would simply toss a coin in the cup and move on paying little attention to the man or his need. Peter’s surprising demand got the man’s attention and the Bible says that his expectation grew for he was “expecting to receive something from them.” Then, Peter made a disheartening statement that sounds almost cruel in view of the man’s condition and situation. Peter said, “I’m broke!” He said, “I do not have that which you are expecting, money, but I have something that is far better and more valuable, in the name of Jesus get up and walk!” That was a Faith Declaration, something I’ve heard many times from people praying for the sick. Sometimes the sick were healed and sometimes they were not but I have seldom seen the Action that accompanied the Declaration. Peter made his Faith Declaration and then did something that could have been incredibly dangerous had it not been an act of obedience and faith. He grabbed the man by the hand and pulled him up. Had the Power of God not flowed in his feet and ankles he would have fallen down and Peter would have been attacked by the onlookers and those passing by. It would have been an act of cruelty that would not have been tolerated. He backed up his Faith Declaration with action accompanied by faith that achieved results. I heard an Evangelist pray for a woman that was taking medication that kept her alive. This Evangelist told her, “Now throw away your pills.” She did and went to the emergency room and barely survived. He said, “Well, she just didn’t have enough faith.” NO! Peter did not depend on that man’s faith for his action, he raised him up based on the faith in his heart and God honored that faith and the stripes of Jesus once again provided healing.
I can call my F150 Truck a Hummer and it will never perform like a Hummer or look like one. It is one thing to call things that are not as though they were but quite another to call those things that are as though they are not. You may disagree with me on this point but let’s allow the Holy Spirit to quicken our hearts with God’s Promises and Word and as we know that we have heard God we can Declare what He has said and has the confidence to Act upon it as well. If we are only saying it but do not have the faith or confidence to act on it, it may just be a wish. I am not trying to be negative but hope to inspire confidence in God’s Promises and help us to achieve balance in our lives that enables us to receive and realize the fulfillment of God’s Promises.
God, bless you as you enjoy this day in Him!