The Hebrew Response:
When the Jewish audience heard these words, they were deeply moved and asked: “Brothers [as descendants of Abraham], what shall we do?” Having thus expressed their faith in Christ, they were commanded to: (a) repent, i.e., convert their contrition into reformation; (b) be immersed by Christ’s authority in order to obtain the forgiveness of their sins. As a result, they would be blessed with “the gift of the Holy Spirit.” Most scholars see this as a non-miraculous gift, consisting of the Spirit himself (cf. 1 Cor. 6:19; 12:13; Gal. 4:6).
The divine promise to them and their offspring—and eventually to the “far off” ones, i.e., the Gentiles (cf. Eph. 2:13, 17)—was the realization of Heaven’s divine “call” via the gospel (2 Thes. 2:14). These called ones would be known as the ekklesia (called out), rendered “church” in most modern versions. Peter urged his auditors, “Save yourselves,” i.e., submit to God’s plan to escape the fate of this “corrupt generation.” Salvation is not independent of human response. About three thousand people (those who received Peter’s word [v. 41]) were immersed that day, being added to those already prepared by the ministry of John the Baptist and the Lord’s apostles (Mk. 1-4; Lk. 7:29-30; Jn. 4:1-2).
The new converts “continued steadfastly” in: (a) the apostles’ teaching; (b) the fellowship (including generous giving); (c) the observance of the Lord’s supper; and (d) prayers, i.e., faithful worship on the Lord’s day (cf. Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 16:2).
Wayne Jackson, A New Testament Commentary
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