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    Christian Theology - Thread: Ananias and Sapphira

    1. #1
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      Ananias and Sapphira

      There is a story of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5 that starts like this
      But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, 2 and kept back some of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet. 3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? 4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.” 5 And as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last; and great fear came over all who heard of it. 6 The young men got up and covered him up, and after carrying him out, they buried him. Acts 5:1-6

      Then Sapphira comes in about three hours later and agrees with the plan that her husband and her agreed to and she dies as well.

      I can't help but wonder what lessons we can learn from this today? How do people lie to the Holy Spirit today?

    2. #2
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      Ananias and his wife kept some money but made everyone think they were bringing it all to the apostles...that is bearing false witness. People today lie to the Holy Spirit when they convince themselves that what they're doing is not considered a sin.
      "Christianity does not require more work but more trust." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "Bearing fruit does not make you a branch. A branch is a branch because it grows from the vine." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "A Christian's life is not defined by what the Christian does. It is defined by Christ and what He has done for us." Pr. Rolf David Preus

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    4. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      There is a story of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5 that starts like this
      But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, 2 and kept back some of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet. 3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? 4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.” 5 And as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last; and great fear came over all who heard of it. 6 The young men got up and covered him up, and after carrying him out, they buried him. Acts 5:1-6

      Then Sapphira comes in about three hours later and agrees with the plan that her husband and her agreed to and she dies as well.

      I can't help but wonder what lessons we can learn from this today? How do people lie to the Holy Spirit today?
      I think it's a form of taking the Lord's name in vain. The Holy Spirit obviously is showing power for the example of the church which really changed the perspective of the church from gaity to seriousness. They were doing things in the name of God but not according to God.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Paul is misinterpreted by those into the letter of the law
      and correctly interpreted by those into the spirit of the law.
      ~~~~~

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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      There is a story of Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5 that starts like this
      But a man named Ananias, with his wife Sapphira, sold a piece of property, 2 and kept back some of the price for himself, with his wife’s full knowledge, and bringing a portion of it, he laid it at the apostles’ feet. 3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? 4 While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God.” 5 And as he heard these words, Ananias fell down and breathed his last; and great fear came over all who heard of it. 6 The young men got up and covered him up, and after carrying him out, they buried him. Acts 5:1-6

      Then Sapphira comes in about three hours later and agrees with the plan that her husband and her agreed to and she dies as well.

      I can't help but wonder what lessons we can learn from this today? How do people lie to the Holy Spirit today?
      I think one lesson we can learn flies in the face of the claim that the Christian message is inherently one of socialism. The early church considered their property to be communal but that's a very different proposition to having something centrally enforced. Even when the two made their false claim Peter made clear that the property was theirs to do with as they chose, and that once it was sold the proceeds were theirs to do with as they chose. It would have been perfectly acceptable for them to hold some back but instead they lied about not holding anything back.

      I think there's a warning there for people who preach a message that might be called "caring, sharing" when they themselves are slow to share. It's easy to cast a vote for a politician who promises to do more for the poor but far more costly to actually go out and help the poor ourselves. It's easy to argue we should be welcoming to refugees as long as someone else has to actually do the work and find homes for them, and costly to invite someone into our home and care for them.

      I think there's also a more generic warning to people who claim to be "fully surrendered to Jesus", "totally sold out for Jesus" etc if the truth is they are nothing of the sort.
      "Do what thou will shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley

      "If you love me, obey my commandments" - Jesus Christ

      The Bible comes as a complete package. If we want to pluck verses out of context so make them mean what we want them to mean, if we want to ignore the passages that are inconvenient to our outlook, we should be intellectually honest enough to throw our Bibles in the trash and admit we are following Crowley and not Christ.

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      Quote Originally Posted by tango View Post
      I think one lesson we can learn flies in the face of the claim that the Christian message is inherently one of socialism. The early church considered their property to be communal but that's a very different proposition to having something centrally enforced. Even when the two made their false claim Peter made clear that the property was theirs to do with as they chose, and that once it was sold the proceeds were theirs to do with as they chose. It would have been perfectly acceptable for them to hold some back but instead they lied about not holding anything back.

      I think there's a warning there for people who preach a message that might be called "caring, sharing" when they themselves are slow to share. It's easy to cast a vote for a politician who promises to do more for the poor but far more costly to actually go out and help the poor ourselves. It's easy to argue we should be welcoming to refugees as long as someone else has to actually do the work and find homes for them, and costly to invite someone into our home and care for them.

      I think there's also a more generic warning to people who claim to be "fully surrendered to Jesus", "totally sold out for Jesus" etc if the truth is they are nothing of the sort.
      sounds more like being a hypocrite than lying to the Holy Spirit

    8. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by Cassia View Post
      I think it's a form of taking the Lord's name in vain. The Holy Spirit obviously is showing power for the example of the church which really changed the perspective of the church from gaity to seriousness. They were doing things in the name of God but not according to God.
      Yes, I think seeing two healthy people drop dead would tend to bring some sobriety to the situation

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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      sounds more like being a hypocrite than lying to the Holy Spirit
      Yes, you asked two questions. The issue of lying to the Holy Spirit relates more to the specific claim of giving everything to God when we are actually holding something back. Then there's the separate issue of what the overall text is telling us.
      "Do what thou will shall be the whole of the law" - Aleister Crowley

      "If you love me, obey my commandments" - Jesus Christ

      The Bible comes as a complete package. If we want to pluck verses out of context so make them mean what we want them to mean, if we want to ignore the passages that are inconvenient to our outlook, we should be intellectually honest enough to throw our Bibles in the trash and admit we are following Crowley and not Christ.

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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      sounds more like being a hypocrite than lying to the Holy Spirit
      Yes. A hypocrite is an actor. Liars and thieves are not. So I think the definition goes to the latter.
      ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
      Paul is misinterpreted by those into the letter of the law
      and correctly interpreted by those into the spirit of the law.
      ~~~~~

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      The issues of this Faith are life and death, and partial - eg superficially holding back - entry is not going to cut it... Scripture records that Act 5:11
      And great fear came upon all the Church,
      and upon as many as heard these things.


      The passage goes on to say that casual tag-alongs did not dare after that to join the Christian sect of the Jews...
      And that the miracles and healings thereafter abounded, such that the sick would be laid out where peter might pass, where even his shadow passing over them would bring healing of illnesses...

      I think it is related to the Gospel message of the cost of discipleship...
      It will cost you your life, which has almost no value...
      And it will gain you His Life, which has infinite value...
      And because we live in the shadow of death as those in Adam...
      We need to count the cost and press on to the end...
      Sacrificing all for the sake of the Kingdom of the Heavens...


      Arsenios

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      Quote Originally Posted by jsimms435 View Post
      sounds more like being a hypocrite than lying to the Holy Spirit
      Could Ananias and Sapphira have been both? It appears so from the story.
      Can we?
      I can't stop the world from turning around, or the pull of the moon on the tide...
      But I don't believe that we're in this alone, I believe we're along for the ride..
      - Dream Theater

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