Friday, 26 November 2021
“Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Acts 2:36
Peter has finished his citing of Psalm 110. Based on what he presented, it is understood that the words of David were evidently not referring to David himself, but to the coming Messiah. He is greater than David, He is sitting at the right hand of the Lord, and He is there until the Lord’s enemies have been made His footstool.
With this clearly presented and now perfectly understood, Peter says, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assu redly.” The Greek word order (which is how the verse will be evaluated) reads, “Assuredly, therefore, let know all the house of Israel.” There is a strong emphasis that the matter Peter will speak of is firmly established.
The word translated as “assuredly” is one which indicates “not to totter.” Thus, it is that which is secure. Its other two uses, Mark 14:44 and Acts 16:23, both refer to someone being securely guarded. Peter indicates that the truth of the matter is secure and sure. One might say, “This is an inescapable truth.”
As such, the next word – translated as “therefore” – is then supported by the words that follow. They are words that are to be heard, understood, and (hopefully) accepted as absolute truth. Hence Peter follows with “let know.”
It is the common Greek word ginóskó, signifying “to come to know,” “to recognize,” “to perceive,” and so on. Peter is indicating that the result of the surety of the matter that he has presented is intended to “let all the house of Israel” come to understand – whether they like it or not, and whether they accept it as not – that the matter is established.
The term “house of Israel” is a way of saying “family.” Israel was the father of twelve sons. He also adopted two sons of Joseph as his own. It is this family which comprises the whole house of Israel.
Descendants from all of these tribes were gathered at the temple, they had seen the effects of the coming of the Spirit upon the apostles, and they had heard the explanation of the event. From there, they were to accept what was presented and continue to convey this message to all others in this nation – the “house of Israel.”
And what is it specifically that Israel is to hear, understand, and (hopefully) accept? Well, it is a thought that is based on what Peter had just presented right from Scripture, and which was fulfilled in the coming of Jesus. It is “that God...”
What has occurred is an act of God, and thus it stands as an eternal edict of God. What God has done is set, it is fixed, it is firm, and it is fully resolved. With this being perfectly understood from Scripture, and from the fact that God is both the Creator and the One who directs His creation, it is He who determines what will come to pass.
As such, and as His words spoke forth of the coming of the Messiah, and as His Messiah had come (just as God determined), and as His Messiah had fulfilled His will (just as God stated), then it is established that He “has made this Jesus.”
It is “this Jesus” who Peter has explicitly referred to in verse 22 and verse 32 –
“Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a Man attested by God to you by miracles, wonders, and signs which God did through Him in your midst, as you yourselves also know— (Acts 2:22)
This Jesus God has raised up, of which we are all witnesses (Acts 2:32)
This same Jesus of Nazareth, who was attested to Israel by God, and whom God raised up from the dead, is the One that Peter is referring to. It is also He, as Peter says to Israel, “whom you crucified.”
These words would have been like sharp arrows pointing directly at the hearts of the men standing there. What had occurred was an event that was prophesied, and it was an event that was then fulfilled. But it was an event that Israel had been responsible for.
They were the people of the Lord. They were the stewards of the Scriptures. They were to be the people of the Messiah who was prophesied to come. And yet, they were the same people who did exactly what the Scriptures foretold, meaning the things they had done. They had crucified this Man – their Messiah. But Peter had said in verse 23 that this was “by the determined purpose and foreknowledge of God.”
As such, there must be hope. It is the next verse that will both show their reaction to the words, and which will reveal that they will want to know if there is anything that they can do to make things right. For now, however, Peter finishes his thought concerning “this Jesus.” It is that God has made Him “both Lord and Christ.”
The word translated as “Lord” (kurios) signifies a master. In the Greek, it can indicate the Lord (YHVH), but it does not necessarily signify that. It can simply mean one greater than another, such as the “lord” or “master” of a house. The context decides the ultimate meaning. In this case, the context is that Jesus is the “Lord” or “Master” of Israel – its Messiah – based on the decision rendered by God. This is clearly understood from the word “Christ.”
The word Christ (Greek: Christos) comes from the word chrió, signifying “to anoint by rubbing or pouring olive oil on someone to represent the flow (empowering) of the Holy Spirit. Anointing (literally) involved rubbing olive oil on the head, etc., especially to present someone as divinely-authorized (appointed by God) to serve as prophet, priest or king” (HELPS Word Studies). As such, it means “Anointed One.” Thus, it is a direct translation of the Hebrew word “Messiah.”
God has made this Jesus both the Lord of Israel and the Messiah of Israel. This is the culminating thought of what has been presented to the ears of the people by Peter as he speaks forth his words of explanation concerning the events that have occurred before them.
Life application: There is absolute surety in the words of Scripture concerning Jesus. If the New Testament is the word of God, then there is no other possibility than that Jesus is the full, final, and forever expression of what God has done in Christ. As such, there is no other way to be reconciled to God except through Him.
There are people that believe Jews can be saved through adherence to the Law of Moses. This is the set doctrine of, surprisingly, the Roman Catholic Church. This is also the heretical teaching of John Hagee and other dual-covenant “theologians.”
There are others who say that even Jews who believe in Jesus (and some add in the Gentiles) must still adhere to the Law of Moses (in part or in whole). These are also heretics. The New Testament clearly reveals that the law is annulled, obsolete, and set aside in Christ. It is nailed to the cross.
As such, to teach such things (which is exactly what Paul refers to in the book of Galatians) is, as Paul states it, anathema. It is accursed –
“I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel, 7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. 8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. 9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed.” Galatians 1:6-9
Let us carefully heed the words of Scripture, and let us trust solely in the finished work, and thus in the merits, of Jesus Christ. It is He alone who is to receive our attention in our walk before the Lord. He alone fulfilled that which stood against us, meaning the Law of Moses.
Lord God, thank You for having done that which we could never have done. You sent Christ to accomplish the mission, to prevail over sin and death, and to rise again in order to give us a new hope and a new direction. Thank You for Jesus Christ our Lord! Amen.