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If ever there was a case of asking the obvious question, it was the day the Sanhedrin questioned Peter and John about the healing of the lame beggar.  The people in the temple saw a man who had never walked in his life walking and jumping and praising God.  Peter had just preached the sermon of his life and added another couple thousand folks to the church. Then, the religious leaders as if waking from a fog, realized something was not quite right and have Peter and John arrested…Then, they asked the men, “By who’s authority did you heal this man?” Really? It was as if they expected Peter and John to file the correct paper work!

The question they should have asked was how did we miss this? How did we, the leaders of the chosen nation of priests miss God and his handiwork when he was standing before us? How could more than 5000 people see and know God and we do not?  The religious leaders had become so entrenched in their religious structure, traditions and authority that they completely lost sight of God.  They killed the Lord to protect their personal kingdom built upon his very name?  These men asked the very people that knew God personally by whose name were they changing the world.

In our culture, the church is on the verge of repeating the same mistake.  We have become so entrenched in our traditions and desire to cater to the world, that we have lost the desire to make a difference in the world around us. So when people make an effort to stand for our faith we call them radicals and ask the same question—“By what authority do you do these things?”

The answer was, is and will always be the same—Jesus, our Savior, Lord and leader. If we choose to follow him and pattern our lives after him, then we will look strange to the world and a bit offensive to the traditional church.  But, much like Peter, if we follow him filled with his spirit, then he will do the work of changing the world.  Help me, Lord to simply follow you!

God Bless You

4 The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people, proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. They seized Peter and John and, because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. But many who heard the message believed; so the number of men who believed grew to about five thousand.

The next day the rulers, the elders and the teachers of the law met in Jerusalem. Annas the high priest was there, and so were Caiaphas, John, Alexander and others of the high priest’s family. They had Peter and John brought before them and began to question them: “By what power or what name did you do this?”

Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: “Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a man who was lame and are being asked how he was healed, 10 then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. 11 Jesus is

“‘the stone you builders rejected,     which has become the cornerstone.