“And all the people saw him walking and praising God.” (Acts 3:9)
The impact of a testimony is an amazing thing. Anyone who is a believer in Jesus Christ has a story to tell of how He transformed their life by giving them a new heart. We can see this truth powerfully on display in the third chapter of Acts. The chapter opens with the story of the healing of a man who sat at the Beautiful Gate of the temple while begging for alms. The man had been lame from birth, and though he sat near the temple gate, religion itself could do nothing for his condition. He thought his greatest need was alms, thus he spent his every waking moment begging alms from others. In many ways, this was all that he could do. In reality, his greatest need wasn’t alms; his greatest need was Jesus. The text says that Peter and John were on their way into the temple when they were approached by this man who asked them for alms. Peter responds, “I don’t have any silver or gold, but what I do have I give to you–in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” Scripture says that the man, leaping up, began to walk and entered the temple with them, praising God. A miracle of transformation had taken place. It was the power of Jesus Christ that had changed the man’s life forever. What I find simply amazing is that verse 9 says that “all the people saw him walking and praising God.” In fact, the healing of the man caused such a stir that everyone came to see, thus opening up a way for Peter to speak up and preach Christ. His testimony was a platform for the gospel to be shared with everyone who had known him before his transformation had taken place. Peter doesn’t take any credit for the man’s healing. Instead, he declares the gospel of Christ’s death and resurrection and how times of refreshing would come from the Lord if they would simply repent and trust Christ. In the middle of his sermon, Peter is arrested and put in custody until the next day, but not before some 5,000 people had come to believe in Jesus.
Doesn’t this show us the powerful impact that a simple testimony can have? When others see the change that Jesus has made in us, it merely opens the way for the gospel to be shared. Sometimes, a person may say, “I don’t have a dynamic testimony like so-and-so!” Remember, the gospel is the power of God that leads to salvation. The power is not inherent in our testimony itself, but in the truth of Christ’s atoning work on the cross and His glorious resurrection. A simple testimony of what Jesus has done in you and for you shows subjective evidence of objective truth. It is an observable and tangible witness to the truth and can have a substantial impact on others. The power of the gospel is the only explanation for my changed life! So let’s commit to share with others the old, old story of the gospel. It is the only thing that can change their life. As the hymn writer said, “I love to tell the story! ‘Twill be my theme in glory, to tell the old, old story, of Jesus and His love.”
“Father, I thank You for the gospel of Christ’s death and resurrection. It is the power of God that leads to salvation for all of those who simply believe. Thank You for changing my life and giving me a testimony. Amen.”