Sunday service, Erlo Stegen, 13 Aug 2017
(Before the service David Kid testified of God’s working in his family)
1 And a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession.
2 And he kept back part of the price, his wife also knowing, and brought a certain part and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
3 But Peter said, Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart for you to lie to the Holy Spirit, and to keep back part of the price of the land?
4 While it remained, was it not your own? And after it was sold, was it not in your own authority? Why have you conceived this thing in your heart? You have not lied to men, but to God.
5 And hearing these words, Ananias fell down and expired. And great fear came on all those who heard these things.
6 And the younger ones arose, wound him up, and carrying him out, they buried him.
7 And it was about the space of three hours afterward, when his wife (not knowing what was done) came in.
8 And Peter answered her, Tell me whether you sold the land for so much? And she said, Yes, for so much.
9 Then Peter said to her, How is it that you have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door and they will carry you out.
10 Then at once she fell down at his feet and expired. And the younger ones found her dead, and, carrying her out, buried her beside her husband.
In John 7:38 it says “Whoever believes in Me as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them”.
Do we believe as the Bible says? The Bible should be like a mirror where we ask ourselves whether we believe as the scripture says.
In the light of our text, if Ananias or Sapphira were our brother or sister would we have been offended and said that they had no love anymore? But God was revealing His holiness and that He will not identify with anything that is wrong.
We see the disciples, thousands gathered together, one in heart and soul. We then see that one person sold his property and gave the money to the apostles. Ananias and Sapphira also decided to do the same, but they acted deceptively, holding some back. Sapphira was one with her husband. The opposite is usually true that the wife is not one with her husband, but in this evil thing they were one. They colluded to pretend as if they brought the full amount the property was sold for.
The Bible teaches wives to be submissive to their husbands, but if the husband do something that is clearly wrong the wife should help him right, saying to him that you cannot be one with what is wrong.
Who of you would join such a church? But if you allow sin in you give the devil room and so become powerless.
We find many such examples in the Bible for example king Saul, whom God had chosen. But through continued disobedience he lost everything.
Think also of Judas Iscariot who had wonderful promises. Jesus told them that in God’s kingdom there were 12 thrones for each one of them, but because of money he forgot it, sold the Lord Jesus and eventually committed suicide.
You might have received the most wonderful promises from God and God might have a wonderful future for you but if you tolerate sin in your life He will say no and it will be your death!
Let’s search our lives whether there’s something we’ve hidden. Remember all you’ve done will one day come to light. God is the judge of our thoughts and motives.
Ananias and Sapphira are wonderful names. Ananias means a vessel of God’s grace. Sapphira means clear and transparent. But their lives were not like that. So there are people with wonderful names but their lives are not accordingly.
Remember the man who cut off and stole a wattle tree. He looked this way and that way and thought no one saw him. But his son told him that he forgot to look up. The father understood that language, dropped the log and went home.
May we not only be hearers but doers of God’s Word.
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