Peter and John had just healed a cripple in the name of the Lord in front of the temple gates, (chapter three). They did this in front of thousands of witnesses, so many people saw the miracle take place. That included the Jewish priests, and they didn’t like it one bit!
In fact they had taken Peter and John, the apostles who performed the “wonder” into custody to question them about it.
“By what power or by what name have you done this?” they demanded, (4 V.7). You see, they thought they had put an end to the teaching and miracles which were done by Jesus Christ, for He had been crucified.
But Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit began to explain and preach about Jesus Christ to the entire crowd gathered in the temple colonnade. He said “If we are being judged for a good deed which we have done, let it be known that it was made so in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth whom you crucified, and whom God raised from the dead. It is by His hand this man is made well,” (4 VV. 8-10).
As we can imagine, the Jewish council cringed when they heard that! They immediately detained Peter and John and held them until the next day trying to decide how to handle the situation.
They wanted to physically punish the two apostles, of that there can be little doubt. But they were concerned of what the many people who had seen and heard the actions and words of the apostles might do. Some 5,000 believed in Jesus that day, (4 V 4).
So they gave them a stern warning not to teach or preach in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ ever again. But imagine the council’s surprise when their harsh warning was met with the answer which came from both Peter and John…
“Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard,” (4 V 19). The audacity of this answer had to set the priests back on their heals!
After some more warnings from the priests, the apostles were turned loose and they returned to a gathering of the church. And what did they do once the apostles told everyone about what had happened to them? They all prayed to God for even more boldness to speak His word to all people, (4 V 29-30).
And when they had prayed their prayer, the place where they were assembled shook, and they were infused with more or the Holy Spirit and spoke the word with all courage and bravery, (4 V 31).
Prayer: Dear Lord…let we who are Your children find the fortitude to speak about You with every opportunity we have presented to us! May we learn a lesson from Peter and John that we need to stand up for You in this lost and dying world, now more than ever before. Give us the strength of our faith and conviction to use whatever gifts we have to tell others about our Savior in a humble but effective way. Be with us always in this endeavor…In the name of Jesus…Amen!
Refs: ~Google~ biblehub.com~ “The Holy Bible, NKJV, copyright, 1982 Thomas Nelson, Inc.”