Daily Thought for: 8th November
ANANIAS AND SAPPHIRA
Acts 5. 1-11
The story of this tragic couple blazes as a beacon. Satan launched an attack
on the advancing church, seeking to spoil her pristine glory. Ananias and
Sapphira were his willing instruments and they were both involved in an
act of duplicity. They sold land and brought part of the price as a gift
to the apostles, pretending they were presenting all. They were quite entitled
to do whatever they chose with their property. They were under no constraint
to give any of the proceeds, far less all of them, yet their act had dreadful
consequences. What was their sin?
It was a sin of the heart, the inner person. Well does the wise man remind us keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life, Prov. 4. 23.
It involved deception. Although only Sapphira told the lie, they both acted one, and thus they attempted to deceive the Holy Spirit and the apostles. Peter discerned one of the worst actions in what seemed one of the best. The all-knowing One cannot be deceived. He demands reality in our innermost being.
It included the love of money, for avarice played a part in their actions. This sin is the root of all kinds of evil; we cannot serve God and mammon. It also included a love of human praise. Ananias and Sapphira wanted a reputation for devotion, like Barnabbas, without paying the price he had paid. We need to look to God alone, not to others, seeking His glory and praise.
Above all, their sin lay in a total lack of the fear of the Lord. Ananias and Sapphira were prepared to test the Holy Spirit, daring God to act against them. They failed to grasp that God knew all about their inner motives and cared deeply about them. The main root cause of their awful experience was that they had no reverence for God, the Holy Father. May God write on our hearts from their sad story, that by the fear of the Lord, we depart from evil, Prov. 16. 6.