While the (lame) man held on to Peter and John, all the people were astonished and came running to them in the place called Solomon’s Colonnade. When Peter saw this, he said to them: “Fellow Israelites, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go. (Acts 3:11-13)
Many raised in Christian faith go to high school, college, a workplace, and other nowadays faithless places and feel awkward being a Christian. Many of us backslide and disown Jesus. I did. Although it was actually in college when I needed a savior, and Jesus gave me a second chance. I wouldn’t have passed my classes or met the love of my life without Him. Although I backslid, Jesus gave me a second chance.
Solomon was the king of second, third, fourth, and fifth chances. The Book of Ecclesiastes was written by Solomon, showing himself on a quest to discover the meaning of life. He was a powerful, rich man and had the means to experience anything. Ecclesiastes begins: “Meaningless!…Everything is meaningless.” The Book ends: “Now everything has been heard. Here is my final advice: Honor God and obey his commands. This is the most important thing people can do.”
There’s no doubt in my mind that Jesus taught in Solomon’s Colonnade many times. However, the name of the location is mentioned only three times in the New Testament. Here, in Acts 5:12, and in John 10:23. It is in this location that Jesus says, “I did tell you (I was the Messiah) and you don’t believe, … But you don’t believe because you are not of my sheep.”
These are the same Jews that listened to Jesus tell them they weren’t his sheep because they didn’t listen to him. Peter and Luke use the imagery of Solomon’s Colonnade because they knew God gave Solomon many second chances and that this miracle performed in the name of Jesus that got their attention was a second chance. It was a reason for them to believe Jesus could save them as He saved this lame man. These Jews could still be saved even though they disowned Jesus and handed him over to Pilate to be killed even though Pilate wanted to free Jesus. Peter was confident in his own words because he, too, disowned Jesus and the Holy Spirit changed him.
Father God, I praise you for second chances. Thank you for showing me I needed a savior. It was a desperate time but the circumstances allowed me to know I needed Jesus. I pray for my loved ones and others not to need desperate times but to see through the power of Your miracles, even the rising of the sun or a newborn, that You can save them. In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.