Acts 12

Day 12, Acts 12.

This chapter starts with Herrod having James the brother of John killed. This would have been right before Passover 44 AD (from the time of Herod’s death later in this chapter, and the donations delivered to the Jerusalem church elders in preparation of a famine mentioned in the previous chapter at the time of Claudius Ceasar).  He saw the people liked it, so he had Peter put in jail in preparation to having him executed.

But God had other plans. Can you imagine being woken up by being hit on the side, with your chains being removed, thinking you were dreaming? And then being led out from captivity?

God can set you free. He did Peter – literally. It took him a while to realize it was real, and not just a dream or vision.

He went to the house where the believers were hanging out and praying (John Mark’s mom’s house). The poor girl who answered the door was so excited she didnt even open the door. It’s like a comedy movie. Its scenes like these that remind us these are stories of real people.

It really surprised everyone there. Peter told them to tell James and the others. Then he left.

While God provided freedom for PEter, it had unfortunate consequences for the guards. They were executed. This gives evidence the story was true.

The chapter closes with Herrod addressing the people of Tyre and Sidon. His robe was beautiful. Josephus wrote in Antiq. 19. 344 that “Herod wore a robe of cloth of silver, so richly woven, and framed with such art, that when the sun shone it reflected the light with such a lustre as dazzled the eyes of the spectators, and struck an awe upon them.” The people of Tyre and Sidon were most likely butttering him up, trying to ensure Herrod did not order something that would damage the people. But in doing so, they claimed Herrod was a god.

Instead of being humble, Herrod apparently accepted the clamoring and praise. But God took exception. Scripture says, “Immediately, because Herod did not give praise to God, an angel of the Lord struck him down, and he was eaten by worms and died.” Josephus wrote the he took violently ill and dies 5 days later.

Dont make the mistake of not giving God the glory when others claim that something is from you. If someone should claim you are a god, then you should give God the glory.

And after Herrod’s death?

24 But the word of God continued to increase and spread.”

And then Saul, Barnabas and Mark returned from Jerusalem, after they had finished their mission. Everyone has a mission.. Sometimes we have short terms ones and sometimes long term ones. Sometimes one mission over laps another mission. What is YOURS? What is your calling? EVeryone has a ministry. Do you know yours? Are you living it?

 

 

 

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