Peter said to him, “Aeneas, Jesus Christ heals you. Get up and make your bed,” and immediately he got up. So all who lived in Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord. (Acts 9:34-35)
In today’s reading, Peter shares the Good News of Jesus across two towns and the coastal region of Sharon. First in Lydda, Peter reaches out to the “saints”– the believers of Jesus– not just unbelievers. There, Peter continues his ministry of healing the sick in the name of Jesus (3:6; 9:34) by restoring a paralyzed man named Aeneas. Then, in Joppa, Peter brings a kind, generous woman, a disciple named Tabitha (Dorcas) back to life, with unbelievers as witnesses. After people hear about Aeneas’ restoration and Tabitha’s resurrection, they begin to believe in the Lord. More than the healing and resurrection of two people, these events point their witnesses to Jesus.
How did Aeneas’ recovery and Tabitha’s new life both point to Jesus? While healing Aeneas, Peter proclaimed Jesus as the true healer. As a result, all who saw the risen Aeneas in Lydda and Sharon turned to the Lord (9:35). Tabitha’s resurrection explicitly points to Jesus’ resurrection. The author Luke even uses the same Greek word for “helped her stand up” in verse 41 (“helped her to her feet” or “raised her up” in other translations) to describe Jesus’ resurrection. Thus, Tabitha’s resurrection is a reminder of Jesus’ new life to those around her, and many people believe in the Lord upon hearing of this miracle (9:42).
These miracles lead to conversions, such as the conversions of the residents of Lydda, Sharon, Joppa, and Saul’s conversion earlier in Acts 9. In each case, people are turning to Jesus despite the odds. Not only do Aeneas and Tabitha receive a miracle, but also these new believers and all of us when we first received Jesus.
Is there a miracle you’ve personally experienced that you’re excited to tell others about, whether it’s recovery from a debilitating illness, the birth of a child, or your salvation in Jesus? God performs miracles to testify our salvation (Heb. 2:4). Let’s reflect on God’s miracles, and boldly and joyfully share God’s goodness to our family, friends, coworkers, or classmates. May we ask the Lord to empower us to do this.