Sermons

Summary: What happens when the church is what it is supposed to be?

• After two attempts by Satan to stop this NT church from making progress the revivals keeps piling up one on top of the other.

1) Revival following Peter’s preaching at Pentecost(2)

2) Revival following Peter and John healing the man crippled from birth(4)

3) Revival following God’s judgment upon Ananias and Sapphira when they held back part of the money from the land sale(5)

• Satan has tried persecution and infiltration of the church and both led to more and more people getting saved.

• The Jewish leaders react again in frustration.

17 But the high priest rose up, along with all his associates (that is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with jealousy.

18 They laid hands on the apostles and put them in a public jail.

1. What would the charge be? Murder by threat? Association with Holy Spirit?

2. Not only Peter and John but all the apostles are put in jail this time.

3. Is there anybody who really did anything for Jesus that wasn’t in jail? How many jailbirds are in the Bible? Apostles, Paul, Daniel, Jeremiah, Samson, Silas, Moses a fugitive, David on the run from Saul, John the Baptist, Joseph?

19 But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the gates of the prison, and taking them out he said, 20 "Go, stand and speak to the people in the temple the whole message of this Life."

1. How many angels had the apostles seen?

2. What kind of message would an angel give to us today? Use your freedom to run? Go back to the TEMPLE and tell the WHOLE message!

21 Upon hearing this, they entered into the temple about daybreak and began to teach.

1. They were there at the earliest possible moment. ProcrastiNATION.

I read of one very wealthy inventor who said, “Without exception, after I have invented something and patented it, at least ten men come to me and say,

“I thought of that a long time ago.” But the difference between their poverty and my wealth is that they thought about it, and I did it.”

2. What happens next is almost comical.

Now when the high priest and his associates came, they called the Council together, even all the Senate of the sons of Israel, and sent orders to the prison house for them to be brought.

22 But the officers who came did not find them in the prison; and they returned and reported back, 23 saying, "We found the prison house locked quite securely and the guards standing at the doors; but when we had opened up, we found no one inside."

1. These Jewish leaders get up and start getting ready for their ‘trial’ while all the time the apostles are down at the Temple preaching about Jesus.

2. The officers are sent to the prison and find it empty of the apostles.

3. How did they describe the scene? Doors locked…guards standing at doors…no one inside What does this say to you about when angels do their thing? They leave little evidence of their being their other than upon the people they help. Guards standing there must have been _________

4. How do you think the Jewish leaders felt when this report came back?

24 Now when the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests heard these words, they were greatly perplexed about them as to what would come of this.

25 But someone came and reported to them, "The men whom you put in prison are standing in the temple and teaching the people!"

1. You probably could have heard the sound of collective jaws dropping. This was even more problematic in that most of these on the council were Sadducees who denied that miracles even happened.

2. One of the most amazing aspects of the NT is the multitude of times that the Jewish leads had opportunities to turn their lives around. Pharaoh had 10 shots but these leaders/descendants of Moses had so many more.

26 Then the captain went along with the officers and proceeded to bring them back without violence (for they were afraid of the people, that they might be stoned ).

1. The one wise decision they made in all that happened was to not bring them back in a way that brought the wrath of the crowd upon them. This was exactly the problem they kept having with Jesus.

27 When they had brought them, they stood them before the Council. The high priest questioned them, 28 saying, "We gave you strict orders not to continue teaching in this name, and yet, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and intend to bring this man's blood upon us."

1. Trial #2: Same charges but with the added concern that the Council was now feeling like they were in danger.

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