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Summary: This sermon "plows close to the corn" on all of us and deeply questions whether we are simply religious or are true believers.

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Religious or Believer?

Acts 4:1-22

February 24, 2002

Intro:

A. Some of you may have gotten this from Suzi Moore this week…

We always hear "the rules" from the feminine side.

Now you get to hear the guys’ point of view.

These are our rules!

Please note...these are all numbered "1" ON PURPOSE.

1. Learn to work the toilet seat. You’re a big girl. If it’s up, put it down.

1. Birthdays, Valentines, and Anniversaries are not quests to see if we can find the perfect present yet again!

1. Sometimes, we are not thinking about you. Live with it.

1. Do not ask us what we are thinking about unless you are prepared to discuss such topics as navel lint, the shotgun formation, and NASCAR.

1. Sunday = sports. It’s like the full moon or the changing of the tides. Let it be.

1. Shopping is NOT a sport, and no, we are never going to think of it that way.

1. When we have to go somewhere, absolutely anything you wear is fine. Really.

1. Crying is blackmail.

1. Ask for what you want. Let us be clear on this one: Subtle hints do not work. Strong hints do not work. Obvious hints do not work. Just say it!

1. We don’t remember dates. Mark birthdays and anniversaries on a calendar. Remind us frequently beforehand.

1. Most guys own three pairs of shoes - tops. What makes you think we’d be any good at choosing which pair, out of thirty, would look good with your dress?

1. Yes and No are perfectly acceptable answers to almost every question.

1. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That’s what we do. Sympathy is what your girlfriends are for.

1. A headache that lasts for 17 months is a problem. See a doctor.

1. Anything we said 6 months ago is inadmissible in an argument. In fact, all comments become null and void after 7 days.

1. If you won’t dress like the Victoria’s Secret girls, don’t expect us to act like soap opera guys.

1. If something we said can be interpreted two ways, and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, we meant the other one.

1. Let us ogle. We are going to look anyway; it’s genetic.

1. You can either ask us to do something or tell us how you want it done - not both. If you already know best how to do it, just do it yourself.

1. Whenever possible, please say whatever you have to say during commercials.

1. Christopher Columbus did not need directions, and neither do we.

1. The relationship is never going to be like it was the first two months we were going out. Get over it. And quit whining to your girlfriends.

1. ALL men see in only 16 colors, like Windows default settings. Peach, for example, is a fruit, not a color. Pumpkin is also a fruit. We have no idea what mauve is.

1. If it itches, it will be scratched. We do that.

1. We are not mind readers and we never will be. Our lack of mind-reading ability is not proof of how little we care about you.

1. If we ask what is wrong and you say "nothing", we will act like nothing’s wrong. We know you are lying, but it is just not worth the hassle.

B. That’s what the world would be like if men really had their way!

1. Today in our text, we come to a particularly odious group of men who were called the Sanhedrin.

2. They had their rules and ways of doing things.

3. They were the religious leaders of the day.

4. And they had also been given judicial powers through the Roman government.

5. They had the political authority to enforce their rules on people with the full force of governmental punishment behind them.

6. Religious leaders with the authority of police and judges—what a frightening combination!

7. Let’s see what we can learn from Acts 4

I. God is an offense to the religious.

Acts 4:1-7, The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. 2 They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. 3 They seized Peter and John, and because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. 4 But many who heard the message believed, and the number of men grew to about five thousand. 5 The next day the rulers, elders and teachers of the law met in Jerusalem. 6 Annas the high priest was there, and so were Caiaphas, John, Alexander and the other men of the high priest’s family. 7 They had Peter and John brought before them and began to question them: "By what power or what name did you do this?"

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