John Kilgallen, «‘With many other words’ (Acts 2,40): Theological Assumptions in Peter’s Pentecost Speech», Vol. 83 (2002) 71-87
The complete effectiveness of Peter’s Pentecost speech implies that the Lucan audience, if not that of Peter, knows at least three assumptions that are needed to make the speech as logically convincing as possible. These three assumptions are: (1) that Jesus is physically Son of David; (2) that the kyrios of Ps 110,1 is the Messiah; (3) that only the titles ‘Son’ and ‘Father’ should be used when describing that it is Jesus who poured out the Spirit. As for Peter’s audience, the fact that Peter supported his speech with ‘many other words (arguments)’ might argue that his audience were introduced to these three assumptions. As for Luke’s audience, Luke 1,35 and its context play a major role in justifying the logic of this Pentecost speech.
1. Jesus Son of David
Peter’s goal is to identify Jesus as Lord of Israel, but, as is clear from the presentation of his speech, that identification must follow upon other elements, presumably so because they are important to this ultimate identification and are part of the argument that Jesus is Lord.
Before speaking of Lord and in order to speak about that person, Peter is at pains to lead his audience to realize that Jesus is Messiah of Israel. To establish this identification, Peter uses a two-step argument. First, he cites Ps 16 for its words: ‘you will not let me remain in Hades; you will not let your holy one see corruption; my body will rest in hope; you will show me the ways to life and fill me with joy in your presence’ (Acts 2,27-28)15. Given that Jesus has been raised from the dead (the eye-witness testimony of Peter, vv. 24.32, is incontrovertible), one can understand and approve of applying the words of Ps 16 to the risen Jesus16. This application is especially correct, when one realizes that the Psalm is not speaking about David, but about a ‘part’ of David (i.e., the fruit of David’s loins): the first person usage in the Psalm is kept in tact by understanding the Psalmist to be speaking about a part of himself, his son. What the Psalmist says about ‘himself’ is to be understood to be about a part of himself, that is, his son.
Second, the Psalmist, of course, cannot be speaking about just any one of David’s descendants — that would make no sense; he must be speaking about that son who, as Ps 132 and 2 Sam 7 (Peter’s words would have suggested to his audience these scriptural loci) have been understood to say, is the Messiah. But this identification of Jesus with the fruit of the loins of David and with the Davidic son of Ps 132 and 2 Sam 7 — this means that Ps 16, when it shows that a part of David should not see corruption, speaks about that child of David who would some day sit on his throne as Messiah of Israel. But Peter has already