Monday in the Second Week of Ordinary Time

Acts 2:25-32

Preaching the Resurrection, Continued

Peter continues preaching.  He moves from the event of our Lord’s life, death, and resurrection on earth, and in the here and now of the eyes and ears of his listeners, and moves to the Old Testament Scriptures which the resurrection fulfills.  You see, these were Jews – people of the Book.  Everything they knew about God, His will, His ways, and the coming of the Messiah, was written in the Law and the Prophets, that which we call the Old Testament, or what some call the Hebrew Bible.  Anyway, if anyone was going to proclaim that someone was the Messiah, the Christ, the anointed one of God sent by Him to redeem His people, well then there were qualifications that man had to meet to indeed be the Christ.

Now what is intriguing about Peter’s sermon is that, to my knowledge, no one had ever claimed rising from the dead to be one of those qualifications.  But Peter makes bold to show the people from their own Book that such a qualification was indeed the case.  He quotes Psalm 16:8-11 as David’s prophesying such an event: “My heart was glad, and my tongue rejoiced; my flesh also will dwell in hope.  For you will not abandon my soul to Hades, or let your holy one see corruption.”  Peter then goes on to explain that David, the one who wrote these Spirit-breathed verses, was obviously not speaking about himself as his tomb was yet among them.  Thus, the prophet (referring to David) was clearly speaking of someone else of David’s lineage who would sit one day on David’s throne as God had promised him.

And so Peter ties this passage from Psalm 16 to Jesus of Nazareth, whose flesh did not see decay, whose soul was not abandoned to Hades, that is, the realm of the dead.  Peter even declares that this was the very thing that David foresaw.  And Peter and these other disciples were testifying of this event, his resurrection from the dead, his risen body, which they had the privilege of witnessing over a span of forty days.

As I said, no one interpreted Psalm 16 this way prior to Peter, just as no one understood Isaiah 53 as referring to a Messiah who would be crucified prior to the preaching of the gospel.  Which is to say this: We interpret the Old Testament in the light of the New.  It is the revelation of Jesus Christ in the pages of the New Testament which sheds light on the Old.  And he was and is the Spirit who revealed this understanding to Peter, the Spirit just then poured out upon the apostles, the foundation of the Church.  And it all hinges on the resurrection of our Lord – the centerpiece of the gospel.

Author: The Reformed Baptist

My name is Stephen Taylor, ordained Baptist minister of eighteen years pastoral experience with a Ph.D. in Historical Theology from Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. Better than that, I am married to a godly woman, Karla, who has been very patient with me since 1989. I have two daughters, both of whom I homeschooled for extended periods of time, who became godly young women, and who ran off and married godly young men, all of which is very proper. The oldest daughter has even seen fit to bless me with a grandson and a granddaughter, and my youngest daughter with a grandson, all three of whom are bundles of exceeding joy. As you can see, I am quite blessed. This website is dedicated to helping people grow in the wisdom and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ through the gift of writing that the Lord has given to me. It is specifically about helping His people grow in godliness, the theme you see repeated above. I write devotions with this aim and hope that they might be of some help to God’s people. Full disclosure: I am of a Reformed bent, meaning that my understanding of Scripture is primarily informed by the Reformers and their successors of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. However, as a student of church history and theology, I strive to remain true to that teaching handed down once for all unto the saints through every age of the Church. I like to think of myself as a “catholic” Christian, as the Reformers thought of themselves. At any rate, feel free to read, pray, and contact me if you wish, or correct me if need be. As you can see, I tend to follow the church year. Of course, I make no special claims about these devotions. I know very well that others have written better and plumbed the depths of God’s word with greater insight. But if my musings help someone draw closer to the Lord, well then, I have my reward. Blessings to you and may the God and Father of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ speak to you that word which He knows you especially need to hear. Grace & peace, Stephen Taylor

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