Acts 3:19-22 NIV

Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Messiah, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus. Heaven must receive him until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. For Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you.

In the verse hilighted above, Peter talks about God sending the Jewish 'Messiah', in the NIV (although other version have Jesus Christ, etc).

What is the sense that Peter is implying in this passage, and what is the meaning of 'sending the Messiah', or 'sending Jesus'? Is it to be understood as the Second Coming? Additionally, what are some of the indicators about which reading would be more appropriate, as the NIV has it, or as the other versions (using 'Messiah' or 'Jesus Christ')?

2 Answers 2


Peter is indeed referring to the Second Advent in the following passage:

  1. and times of rest may come to you from before the face of the Lord; and he may send to you him, who was made ready for you, Jesus the Messiah: THE N.T TRANSLATED FROM THE SYRIAC PESHITO VERSION BY JAMES MURDOCK

Peter's address to this Jewish audience brought to their attention concepts they may have been familiar with but not exactly clear on. For instance, the phrase "times of rest" (KJV and NIV render times of refreshing) is believed by NT scholars to be one and same as what Simeon, the father of John the Baptist, awaited in Luke chapter 2.

Luke 2:25 And there was a certain man in Jerusalem, whose name was Simeon. This man was upright and just and was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon him.

The mentioned "times of refreshing" or consolation is the heavenly reign of the enthroned Christ. As in Peter's address in Act's 2, Paul similarly summons his listeners to repent for crucifying the very One the prophets of old said would come. Of course, their understanding of the Messianic Kingdom was lacking. But Paul's message is clear: Repent, and you too will enjoy the promises foretold by the holy prophets.

We currently live in the refreshing time, and it is but a foretaste of Christ's reign in the age to come in which Christ will no longer reign in the midst of His enemies (Psalms 110:2). When the Restoration of all things (please see Acts 1:6) is completed, Christ will be sent by the Father to destroy His enemies establishing his reign in a new heavens and new earth.

Act 3:23 And it shall be, that every soul, which shall not hearken to that prophet, shall be utterly destroyed from among the people.

As far as which rendering of Messiah/Christ is appropriate, I've pasted A.T. Robertson's notes from his Word Pictures on the subject.

In the N.T. only here and Act_22:14; Act_26:16. It is not “Jesus Christ” here nor “Christ Jesus,” but “the Messiah, Jesus,” identifying Jesus with the Messiah. See the Second Epiphany of Jesus foretold also in 1Ti 6:15 and the First Epiphany described in 1Pe 1:20.

  • Wonderful answer. Several directions I can go with this. Thank you. Out of curiosity, do you have any OT references that directly mention the "consolation of Israel" or "restoation"? I'll look myself, just where direct references would be.
    – user6152
    Dec 5, 2014 at 16:08
  • @wilberteric The OP has given a prime example of Dual Fulfillment and you handled it well. "The Times of Refreshment" include the consolation of Israel, yet the consolation of Israel is not complete until her enemies are destroyed-a future event. +1
    – Tau
    Dec 5, 2014 at 18:41
  • 1
    A direct wording of "restoration" is not found in the A.V. Jeremiah chapter 23:1-8 (righteous branch passage) is probably the most noted passage. A good place to start study is Matt 17:10-12, where Jesus cites John the Baptist as the announcer of the first phase of restoration ..."And answering, Jesus said to them, Elijah indeed comes first and shall RESTORE all things". Another is Luke 4:17-22 where Jesus interpret Is 61:1-2. Lastly, combining this study with a study of the Sabbath rest (Matt 11:28,29, Heb 4:9) is beneficial. Dec 5, 2014 at 19:00
  • 1
    You mention Paul in your answer. Do you mean Peter?
    – Mesfin
    Jan 2, 2022 at 14:20

Paul points out the allegorical nature of two mountains:

[Galatians 4:24-26 NET] (24) These things may be treated as an allegory, for these women represent two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai bearing children for slavery; this is Hagar. (25) Now Hagar represents Mount Sinai in Arabia and corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. (26) But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother.

Hebrews compares and contrasts the experience of the children of Israel at Mount Sinai with the experience of his fellow New Covenant children of the Israel of God:


[Hebrews 12:18-21 NASB20] (18) For you have not come to [a mountain] that can be touched and to a blazing fire, and to darkness and gloom and whirlwind, (19) and to the blast of a trumpet and the sound of words, which [sound was such that] those who heard begged that no further word be spoken to them. (20) For they could not cope with the command, "If even an animal touches the mountain, it shall be stoned." (21) And so terrible was the sight, [that] Moses said, "I am terrified and trembling."

vs Zion:

[Hebrews 12:22-24 NASB20] (22) But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to myriads of angels, (23) to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are enrolled in heaven, and to God, the Judge of all, and to the spirits of [the] righteous made perfect, (24) and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than [the blood] of Abel.

The words “have come” in verse 22 are in the Perfect Active Indicative in the Greek, indicating that his contemporary companions have arrived at the base of Mount Zion and continue to stand there, just as the children of Israel did, while Moses ascended to obtain the commandments. They were about to receive the Kingdom of God when Jesus returned in a short time:

[Hebrews 12:28 NASB20] (28) Therefore, since we receive a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let's show gratitude, by which we may offer to God an acceptable service with reverence and awe;

The words “we receive” in verse 28 are a Present Active Participle, it is more literally “we are receiving.”

John describes the New Jerusalem (the Bride of the Lambkin) as descending from the sky to a Mountain, presumably Mount Zion, where God’s people reign with Christ as a City on a Hill:

[Revelation 21:2-3 NASB20] (2) And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (3) And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among the people, and He will dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself will be among them,

[Revelation 21:9-11, 22-24 NET] (9) Then one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven final plagues came and spoke to me, saying, "Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb!" (10) So he took me away in the Spirit to a huge, majestic mountain and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God. (11) The city possesses the glory of God; its brilliance is like a precious jewel, like a stone of crystal-clear jasper. ... (22) Now I saw no temple in the city, because the Lord God - the All-Powerful - and the Lamb are its temple. (23) The city does not need the sun or the moon to shine on it, because the glory of God lights it up, and its lamp is the Lamb. (24) The nations will walk by its light and the kings of the earth will bring their grandeur into it.

The Holy City is to forever be “in the world but not of the world;” People that are surrounded by “the dogs outside” but separate:

[Psalm 24:3-4 NASB20] (3) Who may ascend onto the hill of the LORD? And who may stand in His holy place? (4) One who has clean hands and a pure heart, Who has not lifted up his soul to deceit And has not sworn deceitfully.

[Psalm 15:1 NASB20] (1) A Psalm of David. LORD, who may reside in Your tent? Who may settle on Your holy hill?

[Psalm 43:3 NASB20] (3) Send out Your light and Your truth, they shall lead me; They shall bring me to Your holy hill And to Your dwelling places.

[Psalm 99:9 NASB20] (9) Exalt the LORD our God And worship at His holy hill, For the LORD our God is holy.

[Jeremiah 31:23 NASB20] (23) This is what the LORD of armies, the God of Israel says: "Once again they will speak this word in the land of Judah and in its cities when I restore their fortunes, 'The LORD bless you, O place of righteousness, O holy hill!'

These are just a few of the metaphors that describe the Saints connected to Christ in the New Covenant.

So just as Moses ascended to God to received the Sinai Covenant, and thus receive the kingdom of Israel, Peter and his contemporaries have (perfect indictive) come to the base of Mount Zion, the City of the Great King, while the Jesus, the New Moses, ascends to God. Moses for forty days, but Jesus for forty years.

When Moses descended, he was denied entry because he gave into anger (even though he was "the meekest man") and struck the Rock (Christ) and so Joshua took over and led the Sinai Covenant People to a conquest of the Promised Land, so now the New Joshua is going to arrive and seize the Kingdom "and give it to a Nation Bringing Forth the Fruits of It":

[Matthew 21:43-45 NET] (43) For this reason I tell you that the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a people who will produce its fruit. (44) The one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces, and the one on whom it falls will be crushed." (45) When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they realized that he was speaking about them.

The arrival of the Kingdom of God was to consist of Jesus receiving the Kingdom from God, and then returning to slay those enemies that did not accept him as King.. specifically identified in Matthew 21:45 as the Chief Priests and the Pharisees:

[Luke 19:12, 27 NET] (12) Therefore he said, "A nobleman went to a distant country to receive for himself a kingdom and then return. ... (27) But as for these enemies of mine who did not want me to be their king, bring them here and slaughter them in front of me!'"

This all took place c. 70 AD/CE in the form of the horrific Jewish war with Rome, wherein the Temple, Jerusalem and the Sinai Covenant Temple-based Theocracy of the Judeans was permanently and completely destroyed, so the New Jerusalem (the New Covenant People of God) could become "the Temple Not Made With Hands" and rule with Christ forever over "the dogs outside."

Please see:



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