By Tonya Allen
Acts 4:34-5:11 tells us that in the early days of the church, believers sold property and voluntarily brought the money to the apostles to be distributed to those in need. During this time, selfishness, a longing for recognition, and deceit entered into the hearts of Ananias and Sapphira. This couple sold a piece of property and then decided to keep part of the money for themselves. I don’t see where giving part of the money would have been a problem until they decided to lie about it. They conspired together and told the apostles that they were giving the church all of the proceeds. By lying to the apostles, they also lied to the church, and they ultimately lied to God.
Can you imagine Ananias walking up to the apostles with a big smile on his face? My grandmother’s favorite saying was, “skinning and grinning”. Little did he know that God had already revealed his heart to the apostle Peter. As a result of his deceit, Ananias fell dead immediately.
Not knowing that her husband is dead, here comes Sapphira, three hours later, and loses an important opportunity to tell the truth. God led Peter to question Sapphira, giving her the chance to set the record straight, but Sapphira chose to perpetuate the lie. Like her husband, this resulted in her immediate death. Sapphira placed more confidence in her husband’s evil plan than in God’s perfect plan. What could have been a blessing to the church, and to those in need, turned into a disaster. Genuinely belonging to the Christian community carries with it great responsibility. We must act in all ways to love our neighbors as ourselves, not to increase our social status, wealth and power.
While you were reading the bible verses you noticed how it stated that the church was in shock or in great fear. God showed his children that he will not tolerate dishonesty in relationships. A person’s relationship with God and their spouse should be based on honesty, integrity, and commitment.
Husbands and wives should respect each other and only agree to Godly decisions. If by chance you find yourself faced with an ungodly decision made by your spouse, speak the truth in love so that the two of you can continue to grow together spiritually. NEVER MISS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR TRUTH!
Dishonesty can destroy your marriage. In what areas of your marriage do you need to clear deceitfulness? There is nothing worse than being lied to by someone who claims that they love you. The bond built between husband and wife is very important, and if you discover that your partner has been leading you on with falsehoods for years, you may feel that you do not even know him or her. To keep your marriage strong, practice being radically honest with your partner.
You expect the whole truth and nothing but the truth from your spouse. When dishonesty controls a marriage, the word divorce will begin to seep into a lot of conversations. Keeping things from your spouse can lead to separation, open communication is necessary if you would like to establish or restore a strong bond with your spouse. Total trust will lead to a healthy relationship, a lack of trust may lead you to divorce.
This week’s prayer: Holy Spirit, please point out any deceitfulness in our marriage. Lord, please give us the courage to remove it from our marriage and our lives. Show us how to build a strong bond between us by being truthful. In Jesus Name, Amen.
Tonya can be reached at [email protected] Tonya and her husband Robert were Married Couples Ministry leaders for 17 years at Freewill Missionary Baptist Church, Montgomery, Alabama.
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