But there was a certain man named Ananias who, with his wife, Sapphira, sold some property. 2 He brought part of the money to the apostles, claiming it was the full amount. With his wife’s consent, he kept the rest.
3 Then Peter said, “Ananias, why have you let Satan fill your heart? You lied to the Holy Spirit, and you kept some of the money for yourself. 4 The property was yours to sell or not sell, as you wished. And after selling it, the money was also yours to give away. How could you do a thing like this? You weren’t lying to us but to God!”
5 As soon as Ananias heard these words, he fell to the floor and died. Everyone who heard about it was terrified. 6 Then some young men got up, wrapped him in a sheet, and took him out and buried him.
Why let Satan fill the heart?
Only one reason…
Satan’s indwelling appears better than the Holy Spirit’s.
That makes no sense! Satan is the enemy of my soul.
But he has one thing going for him.
My innate hierarchy of what’s bad for me is perverse.
Like I feel that admitting fear is worse than having fear.
Admitting to wrong is worse than doing wrong.
Confession seems riskier than the crime.
It strips me of any control of the consequences.
And I’d like some hand in my punishment for wrongdoing.
I learned early on that regulating any revelation of my actions, thoughts, or desires, regulated the price I paid.
So I carefully censure what I reveal to God.
I know. It’s not rational.
But Truth reforms our understanding of what is best for us.
Jesus reveals to us that the crushing pain of confession is simply the demolition of the old, inadequate, and dangerous beliefs that lead us to lie to Him.
It was good for Ananias to die to preserve the church from insidious hypocrisy.
It is good for the Ananias in us to die to preserve the church from our hypocrisy.
Will you sacrifice him as an act of worship to the Holy God?
Speak plain and true to yourself, God, and others.
If hypocrisy leads to death, then integrity will lead us to life.
How does truth reform our concept of what’s best for us?
How would you react in church if someone died after lying to God?
Leave a comment below!