Acts 5:20 "20Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life."
I. Angels and Apostles
a. Ministry of Angels versus that of men
1. Hebrews 1:6 "6And again, when he bringeth in the firstbegotten into the world, he saith, And let all the angels of God worship him."
2. Hebrews 1:14 "14Are they not all ministering spirits, sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?"
3. Angels can open prison doors, they can deliver messages, but they have their divine boundaries.
4. Angels are not charged with fulfilling the great commission
1. Spirit filled men of God are also to be available to God for whatever and whenever.
2. Men have the privilege to proclaim the gospel and lead lost sinners to Christ.
II. Their authority
a. Acts 5:21 "21And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning, and taught. But the high priest came, and they that were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought."
b. They had been forbidden to speak in Acts 4:18,20
c. But the Lord Jesus himself had given the charge.
d. Someone told D.L. Moody, “Mind your own business!” Moody’s reply was, “But this is my business!” AND IT’S OUR ALSO.
III. Their attitude
a. Part of their charge was not only “GO” but they were to “STAND”
b. They were to take a bold stand.
c. No such thing as secret disciples. Matthew 10:23-33 "23But when they persecute you in this city, flee ye into another: for verily I say unto you, Ye shall not have gone over the cities of Israel, till the Son of man be come. 24The disciple is not above his master, nor the servant above his lord. 25It is enough for the disciple that he be as his master, and the servant as his lord. If they have called the master of the house Beelzebub, how much more shall they call them of his household? 26Fear them not therefore: for there is nothing covered, that shall not be revealed; and hid, that shall not be known. 27What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops. 28And fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body in hell. 29Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. 30But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows. 32Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven. 33But whosoever shall deny me before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven."
d. What should God’s people do in such times of conflict and destruction? They should be strong in the Lord, carry out daring deeds of faith, and share the truth with others, despite persecution and possible death. Bad times challenge good people.
e. Daniel 11:32-33 "32And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries: but the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits. 33And they that understand among the people shall instruct many: yet they shall fall by the sword, and by flame, by captivity, and by spoil, many days."
IV. The adversaries (5:17-18)
a. But we are not to give into Satan’s attacks. James 4:7 "7Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you."
i. John 16:33 "33These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world."
ii. Don’t give in, press on. Bayonet drill…all movements are forward.
b. Trust God when you are doing His will.
i. There was a missionary being threatened by gunmen...”you cannot fire one shot until the God whom I serve gives you permission.”
ii. Sometimes bad things do happen. Philippians 1:12 "12But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel;"
iii. It is easy to say… Acts 5:29 "29Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men."
iv. In spite of the obvious threats and personal danger…Peter and the other apostles preached the gospel, while they were being threatened and charge not to preach the gospel.
c. Real adversaries today.
i. The rulers, priests, Sadduccees were opposed to the preaching of the name of Jesus.
ii. We have different adversaries that are more prevalent today
1. The fear of man. Proverbs 29:25 "25The fear of man bringeth a snare: but whoso putteth his trust in the LORD shall be safe."
2. A false sense of respectability.
3. Inconsistent lives. Titus 1:16 "16They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate."
V. The Apostolic Example
a. They were filled with the Holy Ghost.
i. Acts 4:31 "31And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness."
ii. They realized their partnership with the Spirit. Acts 5:32 "32And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Ghost, whom God hath given to them that obey him."
1. This is one of the great lessons of the book of Acts.
b. They prayed for boldness.
i. James 1:6-8 "6But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed. 7For let not that man think that he shall receive any thing of the Lord. 8A double minded man is unstable in all his ways."
c. They were determined to obey God.
i. Acts 5:29 "29Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men."
ii. A witness is a demonstration of Christ, an example of the grace of God.
VI. Their Audience
a. “to the people”
i. Common people: Mark 12:37 "37David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son? And the common people heard him gladly."
ii. To children: Luke 18:16 "16But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God."
iii. To the young: rich young ruler in Matthew 19:16-22
iv. To the old: John 3:4 "4Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born?"
b. No one is denied. Whosoever…
VII. The Announcement
a. Acts 5:20 "20Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life."
i. John 14:6 "6Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me."
ii. John 10:10 "10The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly."
iii. 1 John 5:10-12 "10He that believeth on the Son of God hath the witness in himself: he that believeth not God hath made him a liar; because he believeth not the record that God gave of his Son. 11And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 12He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life."
i. God, Jesus, Atonement (slew), Exaltation (resurrection), Repentance, Forgiveness of sins.
ii. Prince (chief leader) and Savior
1. The adversaries (33)
i. “Cut to the heart”: Hebrew 4:12
ii. “took counsel to slay them”: the crowd…Proverbs 1
iii. “slay them”
b. They this was true, but did not want to lose their power, prestige and position. (34-40)
1. They remembered the lame man.
2. They knew what had happened at the jail.
3. They knew about Lazarus. John 12:10-11 "10But the chief priests consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death; 11Because that by reason of him many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus."
2. The Apostles (40-42)
a. Victory in seeming defeat
b. Peter wrote these words with authority and experience: 1 Peter 4:12-14 "12Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: 13But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. 14If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified."
c. Acts 5:42 "42And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ."
2. The apostles
1. The what is actually a message about a person: “Jesus Christ”
2. Jesus is the Christ!
1. Daily: “daily”, “ceased not”
1. Public: “in the temple”
2. In every house: “private”
1. “teach”: instruct (counsel)
a. Matthew 28:18-20 "18And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. 19Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 20Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. Amen."
b. Educate them: The Savior, the sinner, salvation, service
c. Come full circle
d. Let someone train you how to serve God better. Acts 18:24-26 "24And a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man, and mighty in the scriptures, came to Ephesus. 25This man was instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of the Lord, knowing only the baptism of John. 26And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly."
e. You must go. Text book knowledge is no substitute for the real thing.
f. They don’t give infantry men a text book to prepare for war…they give them a weapon to fire.
a. Mark 16:15 "15And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature."
b. Romans 1:14-17 "14I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise. 15So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also. 16For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. 17For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith."