Open Heavens Devotional by Pastor E.A. Adeboye
MEMORIZE: “And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things.” (Acts 5:11).
READ: Acts 5:1-10
Gehazi is an example of someone who was an honourable vessel that later turned into a dishonourable one. May God not stop using you for honourable purposes in Jesus name! Another example of this is recorded of a family in Acts 5:1-4. There was need for fund raising to meet the needs of the church and of her members. The brethren were told to give and they did. A certain couple, after selling their land, decided to declare only a part of the proceeds as the total takings. But it was their property, and they were not forced to sell it. On their own, they offered to sell the land and turn in the cash. It is even possible they sold it for a higher price—probably beyond the true value; yet, greed would still drive them to under-declare.
But how can we give the bulk to the church? The man must have protested. ‘True’, his wife would have agreed. ‘After all, we could use some of the money to meet our personal needs. ’ ‘What do we do now?’ ‘It is a simple thing. Since nobody went with us to sell the land, we will simply declare half of the amount as the price we sold the land’. ‘But what if they find out the true position?’. ‘How will they know? Or are you going to squeal on me?’ ‘Not me!’. ‘Okay, promise me that if they suspect and call you to find out the exact amount, you will not spill the beans. If you don’t, I will give you a beautiful gift. Agreed?’ he asked. ‘Agreed’, she consented.
When they got to church the following day, the Holy Spirit exposed the man leaving him no room for repentance—he died on the spot. Then his wife came along and was asked the amount they sold the land. Like her husband, she under declared. She too died without any opportunity to repent. This tragedy played out because greed led to lies! Have you been prompted to give a particular seed to God, a man of God, or a fellow believer? When the Lord prompted your spirit, you agreed. But after a rethink, you felt it was a seed too much to give. Decidedly, you gave less. Are you better than Ananias and Sapphira? In the same way, some people declare less than their tithe since they know their pastor does not know their actual earnings. Your pastor may not know, but can you deceive God? Anyone who takes such a step is moving from honourable to dishonourable use by God. Repent and pay back all outstanding monies today and it shall be well with you.
In Acts 5:1-14, Mr and Mrs Ananias died because of lies yet, their death converted multitudes. God never loses. He who lies loses.
Bible in One year: Acts 15-18