Every now and again something happens that suddenly stops us in our tracks. Like the time my car mechanic told me that the leak I’d noticed from my engine was in fact fuel, and that if I continued to drive, the car might well burst into flames. I’d been aware of the leak for some days, but assumed it was nothing serious and had continued to drive. My heart suddenly went cold at the thought of what might have been.
Such was the feeling experienced by many of those who listened to the apostle Peter’s first sermon just weeks after Jesus’ death and resurrection. Like most of us they were happily living their lives, conscious that not everything was quite as it should be, but assuming that it would probably be OK. They were brought up short when Peter started talking about the possibility of a lost eternity if they didn’t do something to address the sin in their lives. The Bible says they were ‘cut to the heart’ and with words similar to those I used with my mechanic they exclaimed, “What shall we do?”1
Panic quickly turned to peace as Peter explained that the answer was simple and free – accept Jesus’ gift of forgiveness and eternal life. It was free for them then and remains free for us today.