What Do They See?


In our culture, people are recognized and praised for how they look, what they’ve accomplished, how much they earn, and how popular they are. TIME magazine recently published its annual article on the “100 Most Influential People” that included a TV producer, a dancer, a comedian, a basketball player, and a foreign dictator. The world is looking for people to admire and follow.

  • Would people follow you because of your accomplishments or because of your faith?


13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated, common men, they were astonished. And they recognized that they had been with Jesus. 14 But seeing the man who was healed standing beside them, they had nothing to say in opposition. 15 But when they had commanded them to leave the council, they conferred with one another, 16 saying, “What shall we do with these men? For that a notable sign has been performed through them is evident to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and we cannot deny it. 17 But in order that it may spread no further among the people, let us warn them to speak no more to anyone in this name.” 18 So they called them and charged them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge, 20 for we cannot but speak of what we have seen and heard.”21 And when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way to punish them, because of the people, for all were praising God for what had happened. 22 For the man on whom this sign of healing was performed was more than forty years old.

English Standard Version, copyright 2001 by Crossway Bibles. Used by permission. All rights reserved.


  1. What observations did the rulers make about Peter and John in this passage? What did they recognize about them (vs. 13)?
  2. What were the religious leaders trying to prevent?
  3. Why do you think the passage mentions the age of the man who was healed?
  4. Why did the rulers warn them not to “speak or teach in the name of Jesus”?
  5. If someone told you not to “speak or teach in the name of Jesus,” what would you do?


The world wants us to believe that we’ll be better off if we downplay our faith in Jesus in favor of wider acceptance, less conflict, and greater opportunities. However, in Scripture we see people who, because of what they’ve experienced with Jesus, are unwilling to turn back from boldly proclaiming him. They’ve been with him. They’ve sat at his feet. They’ve seen him perform miracles and rise from the dead. They have to talk about that! We should strive to do our best with the opportunities and gifts that God gives us, but we should strive even harder to declare Jesus at every opportunity.

  • Ask God to give you the kind of influence that only comes from having been with Jesus.
  • Ask him to reveal any areas where you would be vulnerable to trade your testimony in favor of avoiding conflict.

© 2015 Austin Ridge Bible Church, Inc.  All rights reserved.

Keywords: Influence, Boldness,