Today our church continued going through the book of Acts. The passage last week was Acts 4:1-22. Today it is Acts 4:23-31. I dedicate today’s post to all those who have been threatened by UBF leaders; to anyone who has experienced any form of spiritual abuse by religious “bullies”; to anyone who has been asked to “shut up and go away”.
How did Peter and John react to being put in jail for talking about Jesus and obeying the direction of the Holy Spirit (Acts 4:1-22)? What did they do when the religious leaders threatened them and commanded them to stop talking about Jesus? Peter and John’s reaction is described in Acts 4:23-31. They were commanded to stop talking about Jesus and threatened to stop obeying the Holy Spirit. They said no.
Acts 4:23-31 (NIV)
“23 On their release, Peter and John went back to their own people and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard this, they raised their voices together in prayer to God. “Sovereign Lord,” they said, “you made the heavens and the earth and the sea, and everything in them. 25 You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of your servant, our father David:
“‘Why do the nations rage
and the peoples plot in vain?
26 The kings of the earth rise up
and the rulers band together
against the Lord
and against his anointed one.’
27 Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against your holy servant Jesus, whom you anointed. 28 They did what your power and will had decided beforehand should happen. 29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. 30 Stretch out your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus.”
31 After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.
And today’s sermon will be soon posted here:
“29 Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness.”