WALKING AND JUMPING
He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. (Acts 3:8 NIV)
I remember that day rather vividly. It was October 1988. I had been in Canada for two months. It was about 10 in the morning. Even though I had done my university studies in Sydney, Australia, I had never lived in a climate cold enough to have snow. I also grew up in sunny and warm Malaysia. We were 170 miles away from the equator.
I was in a class at Regent College on the UBC campus. We had just finished the first part of our class. Some went out in the courtyard to get some fresh air. Suddenly white flakes of snow started falling down. For those of us who had never seen snow before it was a big thing. Soon all the international students started calling out to each other to say that the snow was falling. Some of us went out into the courtyard to try to catch the snowflakes. Some were walking and jumping as they tried to do this. There was celebration and laughter. When we resumed our class, our professor said, “Welcome to Canada”.
He is the lame man who begs by the Jerusalem temple gate everyday. It is 3 pm in the afternoon. It is about time for the 2nd prayer of day. Two men walk by this lame man. He asks them for money. They look at him. One of them asks him to look at them. The lame man looks intently at the man called Peter. He expects a few coins from Peter. Instead Peter does something else.
Then Peter said, ‘Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.’ (Acts 3:6 NIV)
In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Peter asks the lame man to rise and walk. Peter does not merely make the request and then do nothing to help him after that. Peter takes the man by the right hand and helps him up. The man rises and walks.
He does more than walk. The man is overjoyed. He goes into the busy temple courts. He walks, jumps and praises God. Everyone recognises him as the lame man who begged at the temple gate. They are filled with wonder and amazement. He is no longer on the ground begging. He is walking, jumping and praising God.
I wonder if this man ever had the experience of snow.