Bible Reading – Acts 5

Ananias and Sapphira (5:1-11). This married couple conspired to deceive Christ’s community by pretending to give all of the proceeds from the property they sold. Instead of being filled with the Spirit (see 2:4; 4:31), Satan filled their hearts provoking them to lie to the Holy Spirit (see 5:5 and 5:9 where the Holy Spirit is described as God and the Spirit of the Lord). The consequence of their falsehood was death and great fear gripped the whole church and all who heard about it.

Signs and Wonders (5:12-16). It appears that one of the main purposes of Acts is to prove the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy (mentioned in 2:17-21; see also 2:22, 43; 4:30). Here Luke continues his case by recording that many signs and wonders came about through the hands of the apostles. As a result, many believers were added to Christ’s community (see 2:41; 4:4).

Further Trouble for the Apostles (5:17-42). Filled with jealousy the high priest and the Sadducees arrested the apostles and put them in public jail. The apostles were strictly charged not to teach in the name of Christ, but they replied, “We must obey God rather than people” (5:29). Such courage propelled the apostles to continue witnessing for Jesus (see 1:8, 22; 2:32; 3:15; 4:20, 33) by teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Christ.

Is Satan or the Spirit of the Lord influencing you? When people examine your life, what do they see? Do they see a witness for Jesus or something else?