November 11th, 2019
Acts 5:1-2 (KJB) But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, 2 And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
There is no crime in selling property. People do it all the time, in ancient times and today. The Bible does not elaborate on exactly what their property was, but many conceive that it was the sale of land.
Secondly, there is no crime in giving a portion of the sale money received to the church. God does not ever imply that a person should give certain proceeds from a sale of an item(s). Though many might easily surmise that ten percent gift or more would be a reasonable amount to give to the church.
What then was this crime of Ananias and Sapphira? A crime which led to death for both of them in such short order.
This couple agreed to pose in a deliberate lie concerning their giving in the early church. They decided to represent themselves in giving an amount of money from the sale of their property while only offering a portion of this money. This “certain part…” spoken of in this verse, was indeed a smaller portion than what they received from the sale.
Now please understand that the giving of the smaller portion was a choice this couple made. However, presenting this portion as another amount was deceptive to the church (and God). This planned fabrication was an attempt to deceive God’s people. It was a flat out premeditated lie. This couple planned an amount they would give, agreeing about it and then to lie, before stepping foot into the church.
Their scheming and subsequent death shocked the entire ancient congregation, and this biblical lesson should make you pause for a moment to this day.
God dealt harshly with their intentional lie. This couple agreed to be deceptive and to mislead this early church with this untruth about the amount money they offered. Had they been honest about their giving, perhaps they would not have faced such a stringent penalty. God is serious about sin and consequences are not always immediate, as were these deaths, but for souls- sin does carry a price.