Acts 4:16-17 – Saying, What shall we do to these men? for that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem; and we cannot deny it. But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name.
There are many things in this world that seem to defy ANY reasonable explanation; that seem to make absolutely NO sense at all, and what we read in our Text for Today is one of them. It brings a question to my mind. WHY would ANYONE seek to stop a righteous thing, a truly good thing, something that would be of truly great blessing to all who would receive it? We can see such an occurrence in the events surrounding our Text for Today.
First let us consider what had been witnessed? A man over 40-years of age, knowingly stricken with lameness, who was laid daily at the Beautiful gate at the temple entrance to beg alms, was completely and miraculously healed. Everyone who knew him knew he was lame. Peter and John, coming to the hour of prayer, acted in the Name of Jesus, spoke faith in the Name of Jesus, and raised this man up, whole, in the Name of Jesus. Publicly this formerly lame man came into the temple “walking and leaping and praising God.” This stirred the onlookers, and many became believers because of what they had witnessed. Who would want to stop, or prevent such things from taking place? ONLY the selfish, the greedy, the spiritually deceived would be among those who would seek to stop it.
They could not deny it; there were too many witnesses, including themselves. They dared not attack it in public for fear of upsetting so many people over whom they still might exercise some influence. So, in secret, they laid plans for attack, shared ideas on how to diminish, and if possible, completely stop this wonderful influence from being spread. And then, in secret again, they threatened Peter and John, and commanded them to cease their speaking on this matter. But can you truly grasp the reasoning behind their threats and actions?
Here is why. The presiding council, the priests and Sadducees, loved their personal status, their position of power, and their prosperous lifestyle, and in their thinking, this new ideology, this new message, and especially, this new power would take all that from them. So, there you have it; greed, selfishness, and pride caused them to attempt to thwart, and if possible, completely stop the will, work, way, wisdom, and word of God. Guard yourself, my friend; avoid this pitfalls, and do not yield yourself to those who have fallen into those pits. In such pits, only destruction awaits.
Manna for Today – Acts 4:1-22