On the Jewish harvest feast of Pentecost, those who believed in Jesus were gathered waiting for the promised coming of God’s Spirit. It came upon them with the noise of a mighty wind and flames of fire, attracting a large crowd. All the believers began to tell about Jesus in many different languages. The crowd is confused and Peter begins to answer their questions.
- Israelites – people of Israel; Jews
- Nazareth – town where Jesus grew up
- Divine – a god
- Miracles and wonders – happenings outside normal occurrences
- Mortal – subject to death
- Prophet – person chosen to deliver God’s message
- Messiah – deliverer promised by God
- Lord – master; ruler
- Apostles – ones sent out; a term for Jesus’ 12 special followers
- Awe – amazement combined with fear and respect
- If you were a stranger in Jerusalem and heard Peter’s words, what would you have learned about Jesus?
- What proved that Jesus’ power and authority came from God?
- What important events of Jesus’ life happened according to God’s plan? Why do you think it was part of God’s plan for Jesus to die and rise again?
- David, the greatest king of Israel, had written a song thousands of years before which Peter quotes. What is David saying about himself? About God?
- Who does Peter say David’s words describe?
- Where does Peter say Jesus is now? What is his relationship to God?
- What gift did Jesus give to his followers? How do we know?
- Why do you think Peter’s listeners were deeply troubled?
- What was Peter’s answer to their questions?
- What does it mean to turn away from your sins?
- What do you think it means to be baptized in the name of Jesus?
- What gift do those who follow Jesus receive? Who can follow Jesus?
- What does Peter urge his audience to save themselves from? What does he say will happen to those who don’t trust in Jesus?
- What kinds of activities did the new believers take part in? How did they act towards one another?
Much of Peter’s witness involves quoting scripture about Jesus and explaining it. What role can scripture play in our witness?