Thoughts on the Acts of the Apostles, Day 36, Lent 2013

I listened to all of the Acts of the Apostles today in today's Lenten reading. I did not read a word. Nevertheless, it's a great aural experience. Luke tells a good story. He flashes back a little before the end of his gospel. Before Jesus departs to heaven, he tells the disciples to wait for the Holy Spirit. While worshiping, the Holy Spirit comes on the community and crazy stuff happens. They worship God in new languages. Flames flicker over their heads. It's wild and it draws a crowd, to whom Peter preaches. Thousands are converted to following Jesus after this sermon and they start living communally like a bunch of hippies. But the religious establishment that tried to kill Jesus doesn't like it at all. So they commence the beatings and jailings. One of their chief Capos is a Pharisee named Saul. He presides over a spontaneous stoning of a Christian deacon named Stephen. But Jesus personally intervenes and confronts Saul on his way to Damascus. He also temporarily blinds Saul to emphasize his point. Saul converts, changes his name to Paul, and starts spreading the good news around the Mediterranean. Acts ends with him under house arrest in Rome, waiting for a trial.

Peter does several miracles that are Christ-like in their wow factor. Later on, Paul does several of the same miracles. They both heal crippled guys. Demons are cast out, healings happen at a distance, without a touch, angels spring them from jails, and dead people are resuscitated supernaturally. Later on in the book, Luke switches from 3rd person to 1st person plural. He joins Paul on his travels. My Greek teacher suggested to us that Luke wanted to validate Paul's ministry bu showing that he could do everything Peter could do.

I grabbed this chart from the Blue Letter Bible website.
MiraclesWhere WroughtRecorded In
Peter heals a lame manJerusalem3:1-11
Ananias and Sapphira struck deadJerusalem5:1-10
Apostles perform many wondersJerusalem5:12-16
Peter and John communicate the Holy SpiritSamaria8:14-17
Peter heals Eneas of a palsyLydda9:33-34
Peter raises Tabitha, or Dorcas, to lifeJoppa9:36-41
Peter delivered out of prison by an angelJerusalem12:7-17
God smites Herod, so that he diesJerusalem12:21-23
Elymas, the sorcerer, smitten with blindnessPaphos13:6-11
Paul convertedRoad to Damascus9:1-9
Paul heals a crippleLystra14:8-10
Paul casts out a spirit of divinationPhilippi16:16-18
Paul and Silas's prison doors opened by an earthquakePhilippi16:25-26
Paul communicates the Holy SpiritCorinth19:1-6
Paul heals multitudesCorinth19:11-12
Paul restores Eutychus to lifeTroas20:9-12
Paul shakes off a viperMalta28:3-6
Paul heals the father of Publius and othersMalta28:7-9

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