ARE YOU WORTHY TO SUFFER FOR CHRIST?
ACTS 5: 12 - 42
(CA Bible Page 1599)
JESUS CHRIST desires to purge, purify, and empower His people.
He designs to do it today as He did in the infant church
described in Acts.
Two members of that church, Ananias and Sapphira, had lied to
the Holy Spirit and been struck dead. Thus, they became the
first members of the church to commit the "sin unto death"
spoken of in I John 5:16.
The sin unto death is committed only by a Christian. It is any
sin of a believer of which that person will not repent and the
continuation of that person in sin discredits the grace of God
to the point where his or her death will bring greater glory to
the Lord than for that person to continue to live in that state
of rebellious sin.
God instantly knew these two would not be repentant, so their
lives were terminated. Thus, their deaths did more to further
the cause of Christ than their lives would have in a state of
Their deaths did much for the purity and power of the church -
- Vss. 12 & 16.
Verses 13 and 14 seem to be in contradiction. One says "none of
the rest dared join them" and the other says "believers were
increasingly added." The contrast is in "the rest," a reference
to nonbelievers, and "believers." Church membership was seen to
have a price and superficial commitment was to be expressed.
Recently a friend said of a certain family, "They won't join our
church." At first I thought this to be a putdown of our church.
The friend explained further by sharing some things the family
believes which they know would not be accepted here. It was a
compliment to the church.
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