“I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give you…..”
Beautiful is an adjective used to describe a person or thing that gives intense pleasure to the senses; it may refer to a woman such as a beautiful actress; a beautiful landscape or a beautiful object. It often implies stateliness or pleasing proportions and symmetry: it also could mean nice, delicate or graceful, handsome or pleasant.
Today my journey takes me to this gate called the Beautiful. It is a gate to the entrance of a temple courtyard. You can imagine it to be made of either gold or precious metals, with intricate designs of dove, lamb, or even the late saints carved into it. If the gate is called beautiful, I cannot imagine what the temple does looks like. But in contrast to that beauty, there were the crippled, maimed or even the poor begging for alms from the religious people going in or coming out.
On this particular afternoon, Peter and John were going to the temple courtyard for the three o’clock prayer. At the same time, a man who had been lame from birth was being carried by some men. Every day these men would put the lame man at the Beautiful Gate outside the temple courtyard. There he would ask for alms from people entering the courtyard. Seeing Peter and John were about to go into the courtyard, he asked to receive alms. Peter and John stared at him. “Look at us!” Peter said. So the man fixed his gaze at him, expecting to receive something from them. However, Peter said to him, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” Peter took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately the man’s feet and ankles were made strong. Leaping up, he stood and began to walk. He went with Peter and John into the temple courtyard, walking, leaping, and praising God. All the people saw him walking and praising God. They recognised that he was the man who used to sit and beg at the temple’s Beautiful Gate. The people were amazed and stunned to see what had happened to him. They were excited, and everyone ran to see them at the place called Solomon’s Porch. The man wouldn’t let go of Peter and John. When Peter saw this, he said to the people, “Men of Israel, why are you amazed about this man? Why are you staring at us as though we have made him walk by our own power or godly life? We believe in the one called Jesus. Through His power alone this man, whom you know, was healed, as all of you saw.
1. Many times, we are like the crippled man. He could not see what he could do beyond his disability. He was so used to begging for alms, that had “crippled” his mind. In Matthew 4:1-11, when Jesus was tempted in the wilderness, satan tried to tempt him with food. Jesus replied, “Thou shalt not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God”. Jesus taught people to live for the spiritual food too.
2. We failed to ask the right thing. Pray like Christ, “Not as my will, but as Thy will”.
3. We just accept life as it is and continue to do the same thing day in, day out. We fall into complacency.
4. When a lame, a poor or even a homeless man begs from us, we dig into our wallet and just drop a few coins or dollar and shoo… them away. But Peter could see beyond his disability that his bigger need was,”to be able to walk”. By knowing and helping his needs, God was glorified and a sinner saved.
What is your need? Have you look deeper into yourself and really see your need? If not, let us pray to God to help us see our spiritual needs and also the needs of others.