The earliest Christians followed a Jewish tradition of pausing to pray, preferably together, first thing in the morning, about mid morning, at noon, about mid afternoon, and in the evening. “Just a Note” posts are brief observations made from Scripture readings not related to a lectionary. If I have one to post, it normally appears about 9:00 in the morning, at “the hour of prayer.”
Acts 13:34-41 continues Paul’s sermon which he began earlier in the chapter. At this point, he presses the idea of Jesus’ resurrection as essential to the task of purchasing forgiveness. By the works of the law of Moses nobody could be forgiven. But by belief in Jesus who is victorious even over death, we receive forgiveness.
The issue here is God’s power to accomplish whatever he wishes through Jesus. This is proven through the resurrection from the dead. Just as we who die are powerless to raise ourselves, we are powerless to work forgiveness for our sins. Jesus, however, is able to raise himself. He promises to raise us in the last day. Through the power of his resurrection, he is also able to bring life to those dead in their sins.
This is the tremendous central issue of Christianity. If we think we are able to save ourselves we are sadly deluded. Salvation and life come only through Jesus, who rose from the dead. This is the message of Paul. It is the message of good news for all the ages since then. Jesus is the savior.
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