Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Study through Acts: Lesson Seven

Study through Acts, Lesson 7
Chapter 4

 Acts 4:12   Compare verse 12 with John 14:6 and John 8:24. Also see the Catechism paragraphs 430-435. After reflecting on these Bible texts and the Catechism, what do you conclude about the exquisitely unique role of Jesus Christ in our salvation? Is there any other way by which someone may be saved?

verses 13-14  Note the text tells us the disciples were untrained and uneducated, but “having been with Jesus.” See also 1 Cor 1:17-31. What is the application for you?
Consider the question, how do we “be with” Jesus? See Leviticus 18:3-4, 24 and 2 Cor 6:17, Rom 12:1-2 for hints)

Verses 15-22   Compare John 11:43-48.  If miracles save no one, then what does?  And what is our role in the sharing of the gospel?  See also 1 Cor 3:4-11; 2 Macc 6:18-28. Application?

Verses 19-20 Is there an application between these verses and saying “Merry Christmas” or “Happy Easter”?

Verses  23-31  See verse 27-28. Compare 2:23 and then, for example, Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Wisdom 2:12-20. Note also Luke 23:25-27.

Verses  32-37      Setting up for chapter 5 with Ananias and Sapphira

430 Jesus means in Hebrew: "God saves." At the annunciation, the angel Gabriel gave him the name Jesus as his proper name, which expresses both his identity and his mission.18 Since God alone can forgive sins, it is God who, in Jesus his eternal Son made man, "will save his people from their sins".19 In Jesus, God recapitulates all of his history of salvation on behalf of men.

431 In the history of salvation God was not content to deliver Israel "out of the house of bondage"20 by bringing them out of Egypt. He also saves them from their sin. Because sin is always an offense against God, only he can forgive it.21 For this reason Israel, becoming more and more aware of the universality of sin, will no longer be able to seek salvation except by invoking the name of the Redeemer God.22

432 The name "Jesus" signifies that the very name of God is present in the person of his Son, made man for the universal and definitive redemption from sins. It is the divine name that alone brings salvation, and henceforth all can invoke his name, for Jesus united himself to all men through his Incarnation,23 so that "there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved."24

434 Jesus' Resurrection glorifies the name of the Savior God, for from that time on it is the name of Jesus that fully manifests the supreme power of the "name which is above every name".27 The evil spirits fear his name; in his name his disciples perform miracles, for the Father grants all they ask in this name.28

435 The name of Jesus is at the heart of Christian prayer. All liturgical prayers conclude with the words "through our Lord Jesus Christ". The Hail Mary reaches its high point in the words "blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus." The Eastern prayer of the heart, the Jesus Prayer, says: "Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner." Many Christians, such as St. Joan of Arc, have died with the one word "Jesus" on their lips.

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