Now a man crippled from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful, where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts. When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money. Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, 'Look at us!' So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.
This scene is both familiar and different from our culture today. We see, in the first part of this passage, that the crippled man was taken to the entrance to the temple courts. He was carried there by people that knew that it was the place where he would receive help. We have the same types of people with needs as the early Christians did but, in many cases, the church has ceased to be known for compassion for these people. Instead of the Christians of today helping people, the responsibility has been turned over to the government. In the last part of the passage, we see that Peter and John stopped and spoke to the man. We also see that the man listened to them because he was expecting help. Do we, as individuals, do the same thing as Peter and John or do we ignore the people and walk away? You see, we individually have the responsibility as well as the church as a body. Yes, the man is expecting to receive money but, as we will see, he ends up hearing about Jesus.