May 16th Acts 4 Peter speaks to the leaders
1: And as they spake unto the people, the priests, and the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees, came upon them, 2: Being grieved that they taught the people, and preached through Jesus the resurrection from the dead. 3: And they laid hands on them, and put them in hold unto the next day: for it was now eventide. 4: Howbeit many of them which heard the word believed; and the number of the men was about five thousand. 5: And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes, 6: And Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. 7: And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this? 8: Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, 9: If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; 10: Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole. 11: This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. 12: Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. 13: Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. 14: And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it. 15: But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves, 16: Saying, What shall we do to these men? for that indeed a notable miracle hath been done by them is manifest to all them that dwell in Jerusalem; and we cannot deny it. 17: But that it spread no further among the people, let us straitly threaten them, that they speak henceforth to no man in this name. 18: And they called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19: But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. 20: For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard. 21: So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding nothing how they might punish them, because of the people: for all men glorified God for that which was done. 22: For the man was above forty years old, on whom this miracle of healing was shewed.
The religious authorities were fuming. They all arrived and were grieved that they taught the people. They saw it as their job. But more important that they taught through what they said about Jesus that there was a resurrection of the dead. They arrested them and put them in a prison until the next day because it was evening. Peter and John were excited because they knew that they would have an opportunity to preach to the religious leaders. The days work had been successful. In fact between 3pm and 6pm 5,000 had been saved. On the next day everyone that was anyone associated with religious authority were present. When everyone was gathered they commenced with the same question that they asked John the Baptist and Christ. What is your authority to do this? In other words we did not give you permission to do this. Peter is filled with the Holy Spirit and he addresses the assembly. He says if you are asking in whose name this miracle has been performed then let everyone know in Jerusalem and in all Judea that it was in the name of Jesus that this has been done. The same Jesus of Nazareth that you crucified and whom God raised from the dead. This (Jesus) the stone that was rejected by you builders that God has made head of the corner. (The head of the corner is the first stone to be laid and all other stones are laid in relation to it.) Peter says there is no salvation in any other. Jesus is the only Saviour. The religious leaders noticed the courage of Peter and they knew that they were not college men they took note that they had been with Jesus. Because of the man standing next to Peter they had nothing to say. This is the true purpose of miracles. They asked Peter and John to stand outside while they conferred. They realised that they could not deny the miracle. So they decided to threaten them to not speak in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered, whether it is right for us to speak you judge but we cannot stop speaking of what we have seen and heard. They threatened them some more they let them go. They could not punish them for doing good. All the common people were looking on and they were afraid of the common people. The man who had been healed was over 40 years of age.
- How does Peter address the religious leaders?
- What is Peter’s main point?
- How does Peter respond to their threatenings?