True Confidence

“Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day.30 Being therefore a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him that he would set one of his descendants on his throne,31 he foresaw and spoke about the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to Hades, nor did his flesh see corruption.32 This Jesus God raised up, and of that we all are witnesses. 33 Being therefore exalted at the right hand of God, and having received from the Father the promise of the Holy Spirit, he has poured out this that you yourselves are seeing and hearing. 34 For David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says,

“‘The Lord said to my Lord,
“Sit at my right hand,
35 until I make your enemies your footstool.”’

36 Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”– Acts 2:29-36

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Egret-II | Florida Everglades | May 2019

Perhaps you know someone who is all bluster. No matter whether he is correct, truly knowledgeable, or simply the perceived expert he will express his opinion. You might say that he is “not always correct, but seldom in doubt.” I’ve known a couple of folks like that – including one who tried to tell me how my camera worked. He was completely wrong yet totally certain I didn’t know my own equipment! The nerve!

As Peter speaks to the assembled crowd about Jesus and how Scripture testifies to him, he makes a powerful statement with which no one could possibly disagree: “Brothers, I may say to you with confidence about the patriarch David that he both died and was buried, and his tomb is with us to this day” (Acts 2:29). It’s kind of like saying, “I am quite certain that Abraham Lincoln is dead and buried. No one would doubt it.

Peter is not merely saying something to which all people will give assent. He is set to assert far more than that King David is now dead. He is ready to point people to Jesus as the fulfillment of what David had expressed in this powerful Psalm 110. In fact Psalm 110 is the most often quoted psalm in the New Testament. It stands as a witness to the profound mystery that Jesus is both Lord and servant. He is David’s son and David’s Lord. 

Jesus is the stone rejected by the builders – the one voted least likely to succeed by the powerful religious leaders of his day – who has assumed the place of highest honor at the right hand of God. This is a truth we must all come to grips with. [Please forgive me Winston Churchill who is reportedly to have said, “Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put.”]

We may wish to sidestep this reality. We may wish our loved ones who do not acknowledge Jesus as Lord will not have to grapple with that at the End of Days. But Jesus died. He rose from the dead. He is now honored at the right hand of God. He deserves our honor and praise. He is Lord. How will we respond to the charge that we had any part in his death? This is the question on which all eternity hangs. 

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