17 “Yet now, brethren, I know that you did it in ignorance, as did also your rulers.
17 “Yet now, brethren,
Now Peter shifts from indicting Israelites to orienting them to God’s prophetic plan for Israel. As “brethren” Israelites, they should have recognized God’s plan for them.
I know that you did it in ignorance,
The one mitigating factor in Israel’s rejection of her Messiah was that she did it in “ignorance.” The nation did not recognize her Messiah, although He presented many credentials that He was the coming One (Acts 13:27; 1 Co 2:8).
as did also your rulers.
Jewish rulers were ignorant of the promises of the coming Messiah (1 Co 2:8). They had an expectation of the coming Messiah, but they did not recognize Him when He came. They did this in the face of His abundant miracles; it was willful ignorance.
God has mercy for the guilty.
Ignorance does not excuse people from culpability, but God recognizes that humanity does things out of ignorance. Ignorance mitigates guilt but does not relieve it.