Thursday, April 15, 2010

Acts 5:1-12

1Now a man named Ananias, together with his wife Sapphira, also sold a piece of property. 2With his wife's full knowledge he kept back part of the money for himself, but brought the rest and put it at the apostles' feet.
3Then Peter said, "Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4Didn't it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn't the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God."
5When Ananias heard this, he fell down and died. And great fear seized all who heard what had happened. 6Then the young men came forward, wrapped up his body, and carried him out and buried him.
7About three hours later his wife came in, not knowing what had happened. 8Peter asked her, "Tell me, is this the price you and Ananias got for the land?" 
 "Yes," she said, "that is the price."
9Peter said to her, "How could you agree to test the Spirit of the Lord? Look! The feet of the men who buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out also."
10At that moment she fell down at his feet and died. Then the young men came in and, finding her dead, carried her out and buried her beside her husband. 11Great fear seized the whole church and all who heard about these events.
12The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon's Colonnade.

Questions to consider:

• Precisely what is the lie that Ananias and Sapphira agree to tell the apostles?
• What do verses 3-4 tell us about the Holy Spirit? Do you think of the Holy Spirit in this
• What is God’s reaction to sin in the church? What happens to Ananias and Sapphira?
• What does this incident teach you about God?
• In what ways are you holding back from God?
• Have you been completely honest with people in the past week? Have you been completely
honest with God?

Possibilities for prayer:

One thing that can be challenging is being honest with the people around us about some of the hard stuff that is going on in our lives. But honesty is important, both with the people around us and with God. Pray that God would place in your life people with whom you can be genuine and honest, and to give you the courage to share openly about your life--the good stuff and the not-so-good stuff.