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Posts Tagged ‘Ananias’

Acts 9:15
But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man [Saul of Tarsus] is my chosen instrument to carry my name before the Gentiles and their kings and before the people of Israel.”

Usually, the story of Ananias is used to illustrate the unwilling messenger who is obedient ultimately and delivers the message of God. Courageous Ananias spurns reason and goes to the appointed house to lay hands on the most notorious anti-Christ of the time, Saul of Tarsus. I believe he went with fear and trembling, but he went with faith.

One thing, however, that Ananias does not really do: he doesn’t tell Saul the whole story. Oh yes, Ananias lays hands on Saul who then receives his sight. And this laying on of hands brings the anointing of the Holy Spirit. But Ananias does not drop the bomb that Saul (eventually changed to Paul) would be the one to carry the name of Jesus to the Gentiles. This would have been a huge deal–a shock!

At this point in the story, the Gentiles were not anywhere in the equation. Ananias was really the first to hear and record this fact: the Son of God manifested for everyone, not just the Jews.

That is no less true today.

The way of Christ is not a mandate but an opportunity. It’s far-fetched and far-reaching. It’s not about race, nationality, or religion. God is sovereign and His Son no less so.

Oh, if we could just walk the essence of His message. Truly, the lion and the lamb could live together.

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Acts 5:3a
Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit…”

Whoa! Ananias is not the only one who is doing this. Oh forgiving God, be merciful to me.

These are the dangerous internal lies, the lies to myself. These are the lies that no one may ever know I have said or thought. These are the traps within that prevent me from having an unfettered relationship with God.

Give or don’t give, but don’t pretend to give.

In my mind, Ananias and Sapphira held back some of the money and laid the rest at the Apostles’ feet for several reasons: to appear totally committed to the gathered believers, to copy Barnabas, and to protect their personal interests. In the end, it was a lack of trust.

Forgive me for holding back a tithe for fear of not having enough to pay bills… forgive me saying I will help someone and then not show up… forgive me for saying I will pray for someone and then not do it… forgive me for justifying my mistakes and passing the blame to others in my mind… forgive me for lying to the Holy Spirit.

If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins,
O Lord, who could stand?
But with you there is forgiveness;
therefore you are feared.
I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
and in his word I put my hope.
My soul waits for the Lord … [Psalm 130:3-6a]

Thanks be to God.

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