Acts Meditation 8:20-21 – Seeking God with the wrong heart

20 But Peter said to him, “May your silver perish with you, because you thought you could obtain the gift of God with money!

21 You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is not right before God. – Acts 8:20-21

Have we taken a wrong attitude to the gifts of God and to God, the giver of good gifts?

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Acts meditation 8:14-16 – Receiving the Holy Spirit

14 Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of God, they sent to them Peter and John,

15 who came down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit,

16 for he had not yet fallen on any of them, but they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. – Acts 8:14-16

Is receiving the Holy Spirit always a matter of being prayed for by a leader? Is it always marked by an outward manifestation of the Spirit?

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4-Step Method or Framework for Daily Contemplative Reflection or Examen

As Christians, we need to pause and look, and ask God for the ancient paths, which gives rest for our souls. I suggest here a simple framework for a 4-minute, 4-step daily contemplative reflection or examen. You can do it at the end of each day. Or you can do it along with your quiet time after you read the Word and when you pray.  You can use the same method to reflect on the week or month.

  1. Rest in God’s presence.
  2. Relish and give thanks for what happened in the day.
  3. Recognise failings.
  4. Resolve to live tomorrow well.

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Acts Meditation 5:29, 40-42 – Obedience & Honour

28 saying, “We strictly charged you not to teach in this name, yet here you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us.” 29 But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. – Acts 5:28-29

When human authorities silence you from speaking the word of Life, you must make a choice. Obey God or obey men.

Both choices carry consequences.

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Acts Meditation 5:19-21 – The Great Rescue

19 But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors and brought them out, and said, 20 “Go and stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this Life.” 21 And when they heard this, they entered the temple at daybreak and began to teach. … – Acts 5:19-21

Can God’s people be imprisoned? Surely. Can the words of Life be imprisoned? Certainly not.

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Acts Meditation 5:1-11 – Sin and Destiny

9 But Peter said to her, “How is it that you have agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.” 10 Immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. When the young men came in they found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her beside her husband. – Acts 5:9-10

The sins of the believer are severe, only that we fail to recognise it. 

The Church was up to this point on a spiritual high. They were devoted to God’s word, to fellowship with one another, to breaking bread together, to prayer. Their care for and sharing with one another was to the point that there was no needy person among them. They accomplished by grace and Spirit what Israel failed to do. 

This backdrop sets the stage for this story, presenting us with two sets of people with two different destinies. 

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