Unto you、 first God— Having raised up his Servant— Hath sent him forth、 ready to bless you, When ye are turning away、 each one、 from your wickednesses.” (Acts 3:26, EMPH)

As Peter ends his sermon on the occasion of the lame man being healed, he packs his last statement with truth:

  1. God raised up his Servant (Jesus). Jesus’ body was not stolen away in the night by his followers.  God raised up his Servant.  It was a done deal for all eternity.
  2. God sent forth His Son. The risen Son has been sent forth by God.  He has risen with purpose and aim and goal.
  3. God sent forth His Son to the Jews first. This is Peter’s message as he stands in the Temple courts proclaiming this very son.  The Jews were privileged. [Paul will say elsewhere that they had an advantage (Rom 3.1), Peter preaches the same thing here]
  4. The Son is ready to bless the Jews. [and everyone else] The risen Jesus stands ready to bless the Jews [and everyone else, but God sent Jesus to the Jews first]
  5. This blessing comes by faith in Christ but requires turning away from wickedness. Neither Jew nor Gentile can come to faith while remaining in wickedness, while continuing on in their sin.
  6. The blessing must be appropriated individually. We cannot follow Christ with someone else’s faith, or turn away from someone else’s sin.  Peter says, “while turning away each one.
  7. Everyone is wicked, therefore everyone needs Jesus. Peter says “while turning away each one, from your wickednesses.” [Yes, wickednesses is in the plural] What a shock this must have been to the Jews who considered themselves the opposite of wicked!  They were God’s chosen people, they were righteous.  “No, no, says Peter, you [and I] and everyone else is wicked and must turn from wickedness.”