12 Διὰ δὲ τῶν χειρῶν τῶν ἀποστόλων ἐγίνετο σημεῖα καὶ τέρατα πολλὰ ἐν τῷ λαῷ. καὶ ἦσαν ὁμοθυμαδὸν ἅπαντες ἐν τῇ στοᾷ Σολομῶντος, 13 τῶν δὲ λοιπῶν οὐδεὶς ἐτόλμα κολλᾶσθαι αὐτοῖς, ἀλλʼ ἐμεγάλυνεν αὐτοὺς ὁ λαός. 14 μᾶλλον δὲ προσετίθεντο πιστεύοντες τῷ κυρίῳ, πλήθη ἀνδρῶν τε καὶ γυναικῶν, 15 ὥστε καὶ εἰς τὰς πλατείας ἐκφέρειν τοὺς ἀσθενεῖς καὶ τιθέναι ἐπὶ κλιναρίων καὶ κραβάττων, ἵνα ἐρχομένου Πέτρου κἂν ἡ σκιὰ ἐπισκιάσῃ τινὶ αὐτῶν. 16 συνήρχετο δὲ καὶ τὸ πλῆθος τῶν πέριξ πόλεων Ἰερουσαλὴμ φέροντες ἀσθενεῖς καὶ ὀχλουμένους ὑπὸ πνευμάτων ἀκαθάρτων, οἵτινες ἐθεραπεύοντο ἅπαντες. 17 Ἀναστὰς δὲ ὁ ἀρχιερεὺς καὶ πάντες οἱ σὺν αὐτῷ, ἡ οὖσα αἵρεσις τῶν Σαδδουκαίων, ἐπλήσθησαν ζήλου 18 καὶ ἐπέβαλον τὰς χεῖρας ἐπὶ τοὺς ἀποστόλους καὶ ἔθεντο αὐτοὺς ἐν τηρήσει δημοσίᾳ. 19 Ἄγγελος δὲ κυρίου διὰ νυκτὸς ἀνοίξας τὰς θύρας τῆς φυλακῆς ἐξαγαγών τε αὐτοὺς εἶπεν• 20 πορεύεσθε καὶ σταθέντες λαλεῖτε ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ τῷ λαῷ πάντα τὰ ῥήματα τῆς ζωῆς ταύτης. 21 ἀκούσαντες δὲ εἰσῆλθον ὑπὸ τὸν ὄρθρον εἰς τὸ ἱερὸν καὶ ἐδίδασκον. Παραγενόμενος δὲ ὁ ἀρχιερεὺς καὶ οἱ σὺν αὐτῷ συνεκάλεσαν τὸ συνέδριον καὶ πᾶσαν τὴν γερουσίαν τῶν υἱῶν Ἰσραὴλ καὶ ἀπέστειλαν εἰς τὸ δεσμωτήριον ἀχθῆναι αὐτούς. 22 οἱ δὲ παραγενόμενοι ὑπηρέται οὐχ εὗρον αὐτοὺς ἐν τῇ φυλακῇ• ἀναστρέψαντες δὲ ἀπήγγειλαν 23 λέγοντες ὅτι τὸ δεσμωτήριον εὕρομεν κεκλεισμένον ἐν πάσῃ ἀσφαλείᾳ καὶ τοὺς φύλακας ἑστῶτας ἐπὶ τῶν θυρῶν, ἀνοίξαντες δὲ ἔσω οὐδένα εὕρομεν. 24 ὡς δὲ ἤκουσαν τοὺς λόγους τούτους ὅ τε στρατηγὸς τοῦ ἱεροῦ καὶ οἱ ἀρχιερεῖς, διηπόρουν περὶ αὐτῶν τί ἂν γένοιτο τοῦτο. 25 παραγενόμενος δέ τις ἀπήγγειλεν αὐτοῖς ὅτι ἰδοὺ οἱ ἄνδρες οὓς ἔθεσθε ἐν τῇ φυλακῇ εἰσὶν ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ ἑστῶτες καὶ διδάσκοντες τὸν λαόν. 26 Τότε ἀπελθὼν ὁ στρατηγὸς σὺν τοῖς ὑπηρέταις ἦγεν αὐτοὺς οὐ μετὰ βίας, ἐφοβοῦντο γὰρ τὸν λαὸν μὴ λιθασθῶσιν. 27 Ἀγαγόντες δὲ αὐτοὺς ἔστησαν ἐν τῷ συνεδρίῳ. καὶ ἐπηρώτησεν αὐτοὺς ὁ ἀρχιερεὺς 28 λέγων• [οὐ] παραγγελίᾳ παρηγγείλαμεν ὑμῖν μὴ διδάσκειν ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι τούτῳ, καὶ ἰδοὺ πεπληρώκατε τὴν Ἰερουσαλὴμ τῆς διδαχῆς ὑμῶν καὶ βούλεσθε ἐπαγαγεῖν ἐφʼ ἡμᾶς τὸ αἷμα τοῦ ἀνθρώπου τούτου. 29 ἀποκριθεὶς δὲ Πέτρος καὶ οἱ ἀπόστολοι εἶπαν• πειθαρχεῖν δεῖ θεῷ μᾶλλον ἢ ἀνθρώποις. 30 ὁ θεὸς τῶν πατέρων ἡμῶν ἤγειρεν Ἰησοῦν ὃν ὑμεῖς διεχειρίσασθε κρεμάσαντες ἐπὶ ξύλου• 31 τοῦτον ὁ θεὸς ἀρχηγὸν καὶ σωτῆρα ὕψωσεν τῇ δεξιᾷ αὐτοῦ [τοῦ] δοῦναι μετάνοιαν τῷ Ἰσραὴλ καὶ ἄφεσιν ἁμαρτιῶν. 32 καὶ ἡμεῖς ἐσμεν μάρτυρες τῶν ῥημάτων τούτων καὶ τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον ὃ ἔδωκεν ὁ θεὸς τοῖς πειθαρχοῦσιν αὐτῷ. 33 Οἱ δὲ ἀκούσαντες διεπρίοντο καὶ ἐβούλοντο ἀνελεῖν αὐτούς. 34 ἀναστὰς δέ τις ἐν τῷ συνεδρίῳ Φαρισαῖος ὀνόματι Γαμαλιήλ, νομοδιδάσκαλος τίμιος παντὶ τῷ λαῷ, ἐκέλευσεν ἔξω βραχὺ τοὺς ἀνθρώπους ποιῆσαι 35 εἶπέν τε πρὸς αὐτούς• ἄνδρες Ἰσραηλῖται, προσέχετε ἑαυτοῖς ἐπὶ τοῖς ἀνθρώποις τούτοις τί μέλλετε πράσσειν. 36 πρὸ γὰρ τούτων τῶν ἡμερῶν ἀνέστη Θευδᾶς λέγων εἶναί τινα ἑαυτόν, ᾧ προσεκλίθη ἀνδρῶν ἀριθμὸς ὡς τετρακοσίων• ὃς ἀνῃρέθη, καὶ πάντες ὅσοι ἐπείθοντο αὐτῷ διελύθησαν καὶ ἐγένοντο εἰς οὐδέν. 37 μετὰ τοῦτον ἀνέστη Ἰούδας ὁ Γαλιλαῖος ἐν ταῖς ἡμέραις τῆς ἀπογραφῆς καὶ ἀπέστησεν λαὸν ὀπίσω αὐτοῦ• κἀκεῖνος ἀπώλετο καὶ πάντες ὅσοι ἐπείθοντο αὐτῷ διεσκορπίσθησαν. 38 καὶ τὰ νῦν λέγω ὑμῖν, ἀπόστητε ἀπὸ τῶν ἀνθρώπων τούτων καὶ ἄφετε αὐτούς• ὅτι ἐὰν ᾖ ἐξ ἀνθρώπων ἡ βουλὴ αὕτη ἢ τὸ ἔργον τοῦτο, καταλυθήσεται, 39 εἰ δὲ ἐκ θεοῦ ἐστιν, οὐ δυνήσεσθε καταλῦσαι αὐτούς, μήποτε καὶ θεομάχοι εὑρεθῆτε. ἐπείσθησαν δὲ αὐτῷ 40 καὶ προσκαλεσάμενοι τοὺς ἀποστόλους δείραντες παρήγγειλαν μὴ λαλεῖν ἐπὶ τῷ ὀνόματι τοῦ Ἰησοῦ καὶ ἀπέλυσαν. 41 Οἱ μὲν οὖν ἐπορεύοντο χαίροντες ἀπὸ προσώπου τοῦ συνεδρίου, ὅτι κατηξιώθησαν ὑπὲρ τοῦ ὀνόματος ἀτιμασθῆναι, 42 πᾶσάν τε ἡμέραν ἐν τῷ ἱερῷ καὶ κατʼ οἶκον οὐκ ἐπαύοντο διδάσκοντες καὶ εὐαγγελιζόμενοι τὸν χριστόν Ἰησοῦν.
Many Signs and Wonders Done 12 Now many signs and wonders were regularly done among the people h by the hands of the apostles. And they were all i together in j Solomon’s Portico. 13 None of the rest dared join them, but k the people held them in high esteem. 14 And l more than ever believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women, 15 m so that they even n carried out the sick into the streets and laid them on cots and mats, that as Peter came by o at least his shadow might fall on some of them. 16 The people also gathered from the towns around Jerusalem, p bringing the sick and those afflicted with unclean spirits, and they were all healed. The Apostles Arrested and Freed 17 But the high priest rose up, and all who were with him (that is, the party of q the Sadducees), and filled with r jealousy 18 they arrested the apostles and s put them in the public prison. 19 But during the night t an angel of the Lord u opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, 20 “Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all v the words of w this x Life.” 21 And when they heard this, y they entered the temple z at daybreak and began to teach. Now when the high priest came, and those who were with him, they called together the council, all the senate of the people of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought. 22 But when the officers came, they did not find them in the prison, so they returned and reported, 23 “We found the prison securely locked and the guards standing at the doors, but when we opened them we found no one inside.” 24 Now when a the captain of the temple and the chief priests heard these words, they were greatly perplexed about them, wondering what this would come to. 25 And someone came and told them, “Look! The men whom you put in prison b are standing in the temple and teaching the people.” 26 Then c the captain with the officers went and brought them, but not by force, for d they were afraid of being stoned by the people. 27 And when they had brought them, they set them before the council. And the high priest questioned them, 28 saying, e “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you f intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” 29 But Peter and the apostles answered, g “We must obey God rather than men. 30 h The God of our fathers i raised Jesus, j whom you killed by hanging him on k a tree. 31 God exalted l him at his right hand as m Leader and n Savior, o to give p repentance to Israel and o forgiveness of sins. 32 And q we are witnesses to these things, and r so is the Holy Spirit, s whom God has given to those who obey him.” 33 When they heard this, they t were enraged and wanted to kill them. 34 But a Pharisee in the council named u Gamaliel, v a teacher of the law held in honor by all the people, stood up and gave orders to put the men outside for a little while. 35 And he said to them, “Men of Israel, take care what you are about to do with these men. 36 For w before these days Theudas rose up, x claiming to be somebody, and a number of men, about four hundred, joined him. He was killed, and all who followed him were dispersed and came to nothing. 37 After him Judas the Galilean rose up in the days of y the census and drew away some of the people after him. He too perished, and all who followed him were scattered. 38 So in the present case I tell you, keep away from these men and let them alone, for z if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; 39 but a if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You b might even be found opposing God!” So they took his advice, 40 and c when they had called in the apostles, d they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. 41 Then they left the presence of the council, e rejoicing that they were counted worthy f to suffer dishonor for g the name. 42 And every day, h in the temple and from house to house, they did not cease teaching and i preaching j that the Christ is Jesus.
Jesus empowers His church to endure opposition Glory of God: that He honours those who honour Him FCF: choosing power and the status quo over obedience to God by nature - we are defaulted to obey men/fear others by choice - in conversations we duck. In decisions we compromise. Person of Jesus - never compromised in conversation or manner in anyway, ever Work of Jesus - suffered the penalty of fear of man. Suffered the wrath of man and the wrath of God. Raised us into God's presence. Gives power by His Spirit to fear and obey God alone. Specific repentance - of fearing men rather than God; obey God instead. Specific faith - trusting that He will indeed honour those who honour Him, even if we must endure great hardship. That we will receive the grace to be disgraced and the honour to be dishonoured. cf 2 Corinthians; this is how true Christian life and maturity is measured, by how much you have been disgraced. 1. The Lord Jesus keeps showing His power to heal v12-16 This apostolic ministry is in the midst of the Jewish community, not in the corners of the Jesus-community. The apostles do not seek separation (they know their faith in Jesus is the fulfilment of the Scriptures); the Jewish leaders force separation. They deny/reject fulfilment. cf the reformation. 2. Opposition (from jealousy) is overcome by the power of Jesus v17-26 v17-26 show divine support for the apostolic message. And traces the rise in Jewish leadership's reaction against Christianity...cf right through to today. Divine leading and protection are on our side, so be strong in your support of Jesus. Some metaphorical irony in a heavily guarded empty room! Sincerely wrong! 3. We must obey God, who raised Jesus, rather than men, who killed Him, v27-32 [cf countless historical examples of this since then; Thomas a Becket etc] Stott, list of early Roman persecutions (Nero, Domitian, Aurelius, Decius, Diocletian) p119 Their anger reveals that they are most concerned about maintaining authority and power and the status quo. cf church planting today! v32 the Spirit is the revealer of the gospel. 4. The voice of reason: God's work is unstoppable, v33-42 Voice of wisdom from Gamaliel; judge by staying power. If it is of God, it can't be stopped. The great encouragement of the church's mission! The grace to be disgrace, the honour to be dishonoured. Glory of God: that He honours those who honour Him FCF: choosing power and the status quo over obedience to God by nature - we are defaulted to obey men/fear others by choice - in conversations we duck. In decisions we compromise. Person of Jesus - never compromised in conversation or manner in anyway, ever Work of Jesus - suffered the penalty of fear of man. Suffered the wrath of man and the wrath of God. Raised us into God's presence. Gives power by His Spirit to fear and obey God alone. Specific repentance - of fearing men rather than God; obey God instead. Specific faith - trusting that He will indeed honour those who honour Him, even if we must endure great hardship. That we will receive the grace to be disgraced and the honour to be dishonoured. cf 2 Corinthians; this is how true Christian life and maturity is measured, by how much you have been disgraced. They have weathered the first round of persecution with joy.