Acts 3:4 MEANING

Acts 3:4
(4) Peter, fastening his eyes upon him . . .--See Notes on Luke 4:20, Acts 1:10, where the same characteristic word is used. The gaze was one which read character in the expression of the man's face, and discerned that he had faith to be healed (Acts 3:16). And he, in his turn, was to look on them that he might read in their pitying looks, not only the wish to heal, but the consciousness of power to carry the wish into effect.

Verse 4. - Fastening his eyes (ἀτενίσας εἰς αὐτόν). Comp. Luke 4:20, "The eyes of all were fastened upon him (ἤσαν ἀτένιζοντες);" and Acts 22:56, "looking steadfastly." St. Luke also uses the phrase in Acts 1:10; Acts 3:12; Acts 6:15; Acts 7:55; but it is found nowhere else in the New Testament except 2 Corinthians 3:7, 13.

3:1-11 The apostles and the first believers attended the temple worship at the hours of prayer. Peter and John seem to have been led by a Divine direction, to work a miracle on a man above forty years old, who had been a cripple from his birth. Peter, in the name of Jesus of Nazareth, bade him rise up and walk. Thus, if we would attempt to good purpose the healing of men's souls, we must go forth in the name and power of Jesus Christ, calling on helpless sinners to arise and walk in the way of holiness, by faith in Him. How sweet the thought to our souls, that in respect to all the crippled faculties of our fallen nature, the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth can make us whole! With what holy joy and rapture shall we tread the holy courts, when God the Spirit causes us to enter therein by his strength!And Peter fastening his eyes upon him,.... Or looking very wistly and intently at him, being, no doubt, under some uncommon impulse of the Spirit of God to take notice of him, and cure him of his disease:

with John; who was also under a like impulse at the same time; and who was equally concerned in this cure, as appears by the notice the man, when healed, took of the one, as well as the other; and by Peter's declaration, Acts 3:11 as also by the following words:

said, look on us; which was said to raise his attention to them, to put him upon observing what manner of men they were, and how unlikely to perform the following cure, and to take notice of the manner in which it would be done. The Jews speak of a supernatural cure effected in such a manner, using such words; and which perhaps is told, with a view to lessen the glory of this (z).

"Elias appeared to one in the likeness of R. Chiyah Rabbah; he said to him, how does my Lord do? he replied to him, a certain tooth distresses me; he said to him, , "look on me"; and he looked on him, and put his finger on it, and he was well.''

(z) T. Hieros. Cetubot, fol. 35. 1.

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