Day after day, . . . [the apostles] never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news that Jesus is the Messiah. Acts 5:42
In an interview, a musician who’s a believer in Christ recalls a time he was urged to “stop talking about Jesus” so much. Why? It was suggested that his band could be more famous and raise more money to feed the poor if he stopped saying his work was all about Jesus. After thinking it through, he decided, “The entire point of my music is to share my faith in Christ. . . . No way [am I] going to be silent.” He said his “burning calling [is] to share the message of Jesus.”
Under much more threatening circumstances, the apostles received a similar message. They’d been jailed and miraculously delivered by an angel, who told them to continue telling others about their new life in Christ (Acts 5:19–20). When the religious leaders learned of the apostles’ escape and that they were still proclaiming the gospel, they reprimanded them: “We gave you strict orders not to teach in [Jesus’] name” (v. 28).
Their reply: “We must obey God rather than human beings!” (v. 29). As a result, the leaders flogged the apostles and “ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus” (v. 40). The apostles rejoiced that they were worthy of suffering for Jesus’ name, and “day after day . . . never stopped teaching and proclaiming the good news” (v. 42). May God help us to keep following their example!
If you’ve ever been told to stop talking about Jesus, what was your response? What are some ways you can tell others about Him?
Dear God, thank You for the example of the apostles and others who were bold witnesses for You. Please give me courage to follow their lead.
For further study, read Gospel Conversations.
The Sadducees (Acts 5:17) were among the first-century religious sects who were unfriendly to Jesus (see Matthew 16:1–12; 22:23–29). After His death and resurrection, His apostles also experienced resistance from them. They were a party of priestly aristocrats, whom some believed traced their priestly roots to Zadok the priest who was loyal to kings David and Solomon (see 2 Samuel 15; 1 Kings 1). They believed that the Torah (the Law) was the chief authority and held that the doctrine of resurrection couldn’t be defended from the Law.