Now it came to pass, as Peter went through all parts of the country, that he also came down to the saints who dwelt in Lydda. There he found a certain man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden eight years and was paralyzed. And Peter said to him, “Aeneas, Jesus the Christ heals you. Arise and make your bed.” Then he arose immediately. So all who dwelt at Lydda and Sharon saw him and turned to the Lord. (Acts 9:32-35)
What Do People See In Your Life?
The early church prospered under the hand of persecution. Saul of Tarsus had persecuted the church severely but, through the grace of God, became a devoted disciple of Christ. The saints who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word. Samaria heard the gospel from men like Philip and Peter. Philip taught a man from Ethiopia the gospel and the word spread in that part of the word. The churches throughout Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace and the family of God was edified. Many were turning to the gospel of Christ. Peter came to the city of Lydda, about nine miles east of Joppa, on the road from the seaport to Jerusalem. A man named Aeneas had been bedridden for eight years and was paralyzed. Through the grace and power of God, Aeneas was healed. He took up his bed immediately and walked. The miracle astonished the people of Lydda and those who lived in the hill country of Sharon and they turned to the Lord.
An untold number of people turned to the Lord because they saw Aeneas walking around after his healing. Peter fulfilled the promise of Jesus, who told the eleven to go into all the world preaching the gospel and confirming the word by signs, wonders, and miracles. Souls were saved through the life of one man. The healing of Aeneas was a miracle. There were many miracles done in the early days of the church and while there were many converts, there were just as many who did not believe. Something struck the people of Lydda to turn to the Lord because of what they saw in the life of Aeneas. Whatever it was, it convinced them to change their lives.
Miracles have ceased and there are no men like Peter that will raise the infirmed from beds of affliction. The greatest miracle was the resurrection of Jesus from the dead and that miracle can be replicated today when men hear the gospel of Christ and obey its saving message. Paul taught the necessity of baptism as the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ. Aeneas suffered the paralyzing disease of the body. All men are victims of the paralyzing illness of sin and cannot heal themselves. Salvation comes through Jesus Christ and those healed walk in righteousness. The lesson of Aeneas is the impact of a converted life on others. Many turned to the Lord when they saw Aeneas. His life moved them to obey the gospel of Christ. That is the message of the gospel for the modern man.
The power of a godly life can change the hearts of those seeking salvation. Many turned to the Lord when they saw what happened to Aeneas. The challenging question is whether anyone will see Christ living in my life? The light of God must shine in the lives of His children, letting others see the glory of God. There is more to bringing people to Christ than just an example of a godly life, but that is the most important beginning. When the world sees the life of a risen heart living in a changed life, the gospel is more palatable and desirable. Aeneas was an influence for good in his life and every Christian must live in such a way that others see Christ living in them. The risen life in Christ can change the world. God raised Aeneas from a bed of affliction and the city of Lydda took notice. If God has raised you from the affliction of sin, let the world see your life changed. It may be the difference in the salvation of your neighbor and friend.