The Acts of the Apostles, ch 5

by Felix Alexander

Ananias and Sapphira

{5:1} But a certain man named ˌĂ-naˈnī-as, with Saˈpphī-ra, his wife, sold a possession, {5:2} and kept back part of the price, his wife also being aware of it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.

{5:3} But Peter said, “Ananias, why’s Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit, and to keep back part of the price of the land? {5:4} While you kept it, didn’t it remain your own? After it was sold, wasn’t it in your power? How is it that you’ve conceived this thing in your heart? You haven’t lied to men, but to God!”

{5:5} Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and died. Great fear came on all who heard these things. {5:6} The young men got up and wrapped him up, and they carried him out and buried him. {5:7} About three hours later, his wife, not knowing what had happened, came in. {5:8} Peter answered her, “Tell me whether you-guys sold the land for so much.”

She said, “Yeah, for so much.”

{5:9} But Peter asked her, “How is it that you-guys have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? Look, the feet of those who’ve buried your husband are at the door, and they’re gonna carry you out.”

{5:10} She fell down immediately at his feet, and died. The young men came in and found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her by her husband. {5:11} Great fear came on the whole assembly, and on all who heard these things.

The Apostles’ public preaching, arrest and divine release

{5:12} By the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. They were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch. {5:13} None of the rest dared to join em, however the people honored em. {5:14} More believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women. {5:15} They even carried out the sick into the streets, and laid em on cots and mattresses, so that as Peter came by, at the least his shadow might overshadow some of em. {5:16} Multitudes also came together from the cities around Jerusalem, bringing sick people, and those who were tormented by unclean spirits: and they were all healed.

{5:17} But the high priest got up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with jealousy, {5:18} and laid hands on the apostles, and put em in public custody. {5:19} But an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors by night, and brought them out, and said, {5:20} “Go stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.”

{5:21} When they heard this, they entered into the temple at about daybreak, and taught. But the high priest came, and those who were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have em brought. {5:22} But the officers who came didn’t find em in the prison. They came back and reported, {5:23} “We found the prison shut and locked, and the guards standing before the doors, but when we opened em, we found no one inside!”

{5:24} Now when the high priest, the captain of the temple and the chief priests heard these words, they were very perplexed about em and what might become of this. {5:25} One came and told em, “Look, the men who yas’ve put in prison are in the temple, standing and teaching the people.” {5:26} Then the captain went with the officers, and brought em without violence, cos they were afraid that the people might stone em.

{5:27} When they’d brought em, they set em before the council. The high priest questioned em, {5:28} saying, “Didn’t we strictly command you-guys not to teach in this name? Look, yas’ve filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and yas intend to bring this man’s blood on us.”

{5:29} But Peter and the apostles answered, “We’ve got to obey God rather than men. {5:30} The God of our fathers raised Jesus up, who you guys’d killed, hanging him on a tree. {5:31} God exalted him with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior, to give repentance to Israel, and remission of sins. {5:32} We’re his witnesses to these things; and so’s the Holy Spirit as well, who God ‘s given to those who obey him.”

Comparison to false messianic movements

{5:33} But they, when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and determined to kill em. {5:34} But one stood up in the council, a Pharisee named Gaˈmā-lĭ-el, a teacher of the law, honored by all the people, and commanded to put the apostles out for a little while. {5:35} He said to them, “You men of Israel, be careful with these men, what you’re about to do. {5:36} Cos before these days, ˈTheu-das rose up, making himself out to be somebody; who a number of men—about four hundred—joined ’emselves to: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were dispersed, and came to nothing. {5:37} After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the enrolment, and drew away some people after him. He also perished, and all—as many as obeyed him—were scattered abroad. {5:38} Now I tell yas, withdraw from these men, and leave em alone. Cos if this counsel or this work is men’s, it’ll be overthrown. {5:39} But if it’s God’s, you-guys won’t be able to overthrow it, and yas’d be found even to be fighting against God!”

{5:40} They agreed with him. Summoning the apostles, they beat em and commanded em not to speak in Jesus’s name, and let em go. {5:41} So they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for Jesus’s name.

{5:42} Every day, in the temple and at home, they never stopped teaching and preaching Jesus, the Christ.