TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
“Let all the house of Israel therefore know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified.”
Now when they heard this they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, “Brothers, what shall we do?”
Acts 2:36-37 (ESV)
THE FIRST DAY OF CHURCH: CUT TO THE HEART
The son of an old farmer left home and traveled to New York. He went there to attend a notable butcher’s college. After graduation, he returned home only to find his father in the middle of cutting and butchering a hog. He asked his father if he might help him. The father replied: son I’ve been killing and cutting up hogs, long before you were born. Finally, after some persuasion, the father gave him permission to help. The father could only get a side, some ribs, ham hocks, pig tails and feet, and of course chitterlings.
The son took his side of the pig; and placed it on the table. And in a short while started cutting out pork chops, bacon, spare ribs, ham hocks; loin roast, tenderloins; shoulder blade steaks, picnic steaks and those other delicacies, with just the father’s hand tools. The father came over to his table and saw what his son had done, asked him with great amazement: boy where did you find all these cuts? The son replied: daddy they been in the hog all the time; I just recently learned how to cut ‘um out!
There is a play on words in Acts 2:36-37. The play is “the Jesus who you crucified” and “they were cut to the heart.” The idea is when they realized it was their sins that had led to Jesus being “cut” or “pierced” on the cross, they were then “cut” or “pierced” to the heart. The NAS marginal note has this paraphrase “wounded in conscience.” Their sin had been there all the time but God’s Word made them conscious of it and moved them to a place of faith and action.
Hebrews 4:12-13 teaches, “For the Word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. And no creature is hidden from his sight, but all are naked and exposed to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” Taking time to read God’s Word and allowing it to work on our hearts has always been a key part of the church since its birth. Ask God to give you a heart that remains sensitive to the Word of God today.