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  • Writer's pictureBurbank Road Church of Christ

They did not cease...

Acts 5:17-21

17 Then the high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with indignation,

18 and laid their hands on the apostles and put them in the common prison.

19 But at night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said,

20 “Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.”

21 And when they heard that, they entered the temple early in the morning and taught. But the high priest and those with him came and called the council together, with all the elders of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.

The high priest had the apostles put in prison for doing the works of God.

They were preaching the gospel of Jesus and healing the sick.

Many were converted to believe in the Lord.

This was a threat to the council, and they were angered.

So, they put them in prison.

But as we see, the Lord would not be stopped.

God would not allow His message to be silenced.

He sent an angel to release them and commanded them to continue speaking in the temple.

We can see in verse 21, they did just that.

They went back to the temple and continued teaching.

Later the council tried to summon the apostles from prison and were surprised to find they were no longer in prison.

Instead, the apostles were back in the temple preaching the gospel.

How many of us would be willing to go right back to the activity that got us put in jail?

It would be a challenge to us, wouldn't it?

Of course, having an angel appear and free us would definitely be encouraging.

But, still, this shows their firm belief.

They refused to be deterred from speaking about Jesus.

The council wanted to kill the apostles, just as they had killed Jesus.

The apostles had seen Jesus die, they knew the risk.

However, notice these verses after they were beaten, and the council reluctantly let them go.

Acts 5:41-42

41 So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.

42 And daily in the temple, and in every house, they did not cease teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ.

They rejoiced for being beaten over teaching Jesus.

Would we be able to rejoice at that wrong, that injustice?

Yet, that is what we are told to do.

And in verse 42, what did they do?

What was the apostle's response to the council and their threats?

They continued to teach and preach the gospel of Jesus, our Lord and Savior.

This is their example to us.

We may face times, where we are under threat of imprisonment or death or other penalties under man's law.

But we should continue to peacefully, lovingly, proclaim the message of Jesus.

The gospel is more important than our earthly lives.

We must obey the Lord; His message is more important than man's law.

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