Select Page
Read Introduction to Acts

 

12 And through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. And they were all with one accord in Solomon’s Porch. 13 Yet none of the rest dared join them, but the people esteemed them highly. 14 And believers were increasingly added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women, 15 so that they brought the sick out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches, that at least the shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them. 16 Also a multitude gathered from the surrounding cities to Jerusalem, bringing sick people and those who were tormented by unclean spirits, and they were all healed.

 

The early church continued to preach the gospel regardless of political threats (5:12-16). This section is a summary of the church’s activities, which focus on signs and wonders.

5:12

And through the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people [general population].

“Signs and wonders” attested to the authority of Christianity, especially in Acts (Acts 2:19, 22, 43; 4:16, 22, 30). “Signs” pointed to the authenticity of the message of Christianity. “Apostles” here indicate that more apostles than Peter and John performed miracles.

And they were all with one accord in Solomon’s Porch [Colonnade].

“One accord” again emphasizes the unity of the early church (Acts 1:14; 2:46; 4:24). They were single minded in their ministry in the Temple.

Solomon’s Porch was within the precincts of the Temple. This Porch was a covered walkway formed by rows of columns that supported a roof. It was open on the inner side facing the center of the Temple complex. The location of the Porch was beside the Court of the Gentiles on its eastern side. Solomon’s Porch was used for teaching, commerce, and conversation (Acts 3:11). It was probably the customary gathering place for believers. It was the place where God healed the lame man.

5:13

Yet none of the rest dared join them,

The evangelists began to have opposition. Some were cautious about joining the apostles in evangelism.

but the people esteemed them highly.

The general population of Christians held the evangelists in high esteem.

5:14

And believers were increasingly added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women,

The church continued to have rapid numerical growth in numbers (Acts 2:41, 47; 4:4; 6:1, 7; 9:31).

5:15

so that they brought the sick out into the streets and laid them on beds and couches,

The hand of God was clearly upon the apostles because it was apparent to all that He used them in healing.

that at least the shadow of Peter passing by might fall on some of them.

As Peter passed by the sick in the streets, some hoped that his shadow would heal them. However, there is no indication in this passage that Peter’s shadow healed them.

5:16

Also a multitude gathered from the surrounding cities to Jerusalem,

This verse shows signs of the church beginning to move outside the precincts of Jerusalem in its effectiveness.

bringing sick people and those who were tormented by unclean [evil] spirits,

This clause shows the first healing of people outside the city of Jerusalem.

and they were all healed.

There were no exceptions; “all” were healed.

PRINCIPLE:

Signs and wonders were meant to authenticate the apostles of Jesus Christ (not the church apostles).

APPLICATION:

God never designed miracles to be a constant in the church. The purpose of signs and wonders was to authenticate apostolic authority. Apostolic authority carried the right to write Scripture (the New Testament) and establish the church as distinguished from the nation Israel (2 Co 12:12). Apostolic ministry was unique to the New Testament period. The gift of miracles was limited to the apostles of Christ and not to the apostles (ambassadors) of the church. There are no apostles of Christ today in the church.

Share