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We continue through chapter 4, I do hope you are enjoying reading the studies as much as I enjoy writing them.
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THE POWER AND AUTHORITY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT
5Then on the following day, their magistrates and elders and scribes were assembled in Jerusalem,
6Including Annas the high priest and Caiaphas and John and Alexander and all others who belonged to the high priestly relationship.
7And they set the men in their midst and repeatedly demanded, By what sort of power or by what kind of authority did [such people as] you do this [healing]?
8Then Peter, [because he was] filled with [and controlled by] the Holy Spirit, said to them, Rulers of the people and members of the council (the Sanhedrin),
9If we are being put on trial [here] today and examined concerning a good deed done to benefit a feeble (helpless) cripple, by what means this man has been restored to health,
10Let it be known and understood by all of you, and by the whole house of Israel, that in the name and through the power and authority of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, Whom you crucified, [but] Whom God raised from the dead, in Him and by means of Him this man is standing here before you well and sound in body.
11This [Jesus] is the Stone which was despised and rejected by you, the builders, but which has become the Head of the corner [the Cornerstone]
Peter and John, had been arrested, after the power of God was shown in the healing of the crippled man. That must have been a long night, for both of them and also for the fledgling church. I don't know for certain, but probably the apostles and the church spent large parts of that night in prayer. When problems occur and persecution happens, it should drive the church and us as individuals to our knees.. Amen.
I just love verse 8. Peter was filled and controlled by the Holy Spirit. He didn't rant or get flustered. He was totally under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Surely, this is an example to us, when we come under scrutiny. We need to be filled constantly, with the power and boldness of the Holy Spirit Ephesians 5:18
I wonder if Peter, remembered the words of Jesus in Matthew 28:18-20, when HE said ' all authority is given unto me'. We do things in the authority and in the name of Jesus, we preach the gospel, in the power of His Spirit. Although, we are told to be in subjection to authorities and governments, they sometimes set down restrictions, that stop the preaching and sharing of the gospel, when this happens, our first duty, is to share the gospel. We need to obey God rather than Man.
In verse 10, as usual, He gave all the glory for the healing to His Saviour. The Apostles, were not seeking to put themselves forward. They were not seeking recognition for themselves. Maybe some of the so called pastors and preachers, who go around today, have something to learn from Peter.
In his first Epistle, Peter wrote on suffering for the Gospel and giving an answer for your faith. When he wrote this epistle, I wonder if his mind was looking back to his conversation here.
1 Peter 3
13Now who is there to hurt you if you are [d]zealous followers of that which is good?
14But even in case you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, [you are] blessed (happy, to be envied). Do not dread or be afraid of their threats, nor be disturbed [by their opposition].
15But in your hearts set Christ apart as holy [and acknowledge Him] as Lord. Always be ready to give a logical defense to anyone who asks you to account for the hope that is in you, but do it courteously and respectfully.
16[And see to it that] your conscience is entirely clear ([e]unimpaired), so that, when you are falsely accused as evildoers, those who threaten you abusively and revile your right behavior in Christ may come to be ashamed [of slandering your good lives].
17For [it is] better to suffer [unjustly] for doing right, if that should be God's will, than to suffer [justly] for doing wrong.
Jesus, the one, who the authorities had rejected, was now and is the Head of the Church. He alone is our Divine foundation.
Let us rejoice that Jesus is our sure foundation.. Amen.
If you do not know Jesus as your sure foundation. I invite you to visit the page at the bottom of this message, to find out, how you can trust Him and Him alone for salvation.
God bless you
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