At the end of the last segment I know that I said the titles of this would be: ( Desiring the blessings but, not willing to pay the price ). However, the first few verses in this chapter are so filled with ( spiritual food ) that needs to be revealed that, even after writing a whole segment, I felt impressed by God’s Spirit to slow down and try and seperate the things seen here and allow his spirit to speak to the hearts of his people.
Therefore, let’s start by pointing out what had just happened in the last verses of ( Acts 4: 36-37 ) And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, ( which is being interpreted, the son of consolation, ) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus, ( 37 ) Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
According to this verse; Barnabas was a man that was in the center of the things, Israel, as a nation did ( by religious law ). The fact that he was a ( Levite ) says the he was in with all those that was apposing Jesus as Messiah. If you go back in the Old Testament you will see that ( the Priest ) , the tribe of Israel that administered the law, was the tribe of Levi. Yet, he believed so strongly that Jesus Christ was the Messiah that he willingly sold all his possessions and laid them at the Apostles’ feet.
By comparison, it would be like a king giving up his authority, selling all he had and becoming a normal citizen. This was a very powerful statement to those that looked at him as superior to them and, also to those of his equal. The apostles knew this man and, evidently pretty well. According to what they surnamed him; it appears that when the apostles suffered disappointments, he would console them with encouraging words.
I’m going to say something here that appears to be true but, I can’t prove it. Joses, being surnamed Barnabas had responsibilities in the religious aspect of the Nation of Israel. More than likely he did what he was supposed to do within his office. By what is being said in this verse, it appears that he had studied the Old Testament and knew that all that had transpired in the last few days was the fulfilling of scripture. Even as he watched the apostles as they followed Jesus he encouraged them, according to this verse.
At this time he sees a need for him to denounced all that he has ever stood for and, join the cause of Christ, willingly laying all he had on the line. Not only all his possessions but his ties to the religious leaders as well, being a Levite.
We go straight from that event, seeing a well know man give his all in ( Acts 4:37 ) to ( Acts 5:1 ) with Ananias and Sapphira being virtually unknowns and seeking to make a statement; just as he did. The word of God is filled with pictures and types that God desires for us to see and to grow spiritually by these verses and, we’ll see more as we move on. However, we need to truly unfold all that we can see here.
There is a metaphor given about Jesus Christ stretching out his hands on the cross. I states that with one hand he reached up to heaven to God the Father and, with the other he reached down to man pulling them together on his Cross. Here, we see somewhat the same picture. The time, Christ has purchased the Church with his own blood. At this moment,; that Church is standing between the religious mindset of Israel and the common man. A choice has to be made, who are we going to follow?
Joses the Levite just made a choice. He proved his choice by his actions. What he did can be seen as a example of what every Levite or, person of authority should do at this time but, it’s still a choice that each person has to make. God the Father made a choice to choose the Nation of Israel to be his people. Because of that nation’s choices it has brought them to this point in time. Back in Daniel ( 9:24-27 ) we see this: ( Seventy weeks are determined upon thy people and upon thy holy city, to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in everlasting righteousness, and to seal up the vision and prophecy, and to anoint the most Holy.( 25 ) Know therefore and understand, that from the going forth of the command to restore and to build Jerusalem unto the Messiah the Prince shall be seven weeks, and threescore and two weeks: the street shall be built again, and the wall, even in troublous times. ( 26 ) And after threescore and two weeks shall Messiah be cut off, but not for himself: and the people of the prince that shall come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary; and the end thereof shall be with a flood, and unto the end of the war desolations are determined. ( 27 ) And he shall confirm the covenant with many for one week: and in the midst of the week he shall cause the sacrifice and the ablation to cease, and for the overspreading of abominations he shall make it desolate, even until the consumation, and that determined shall be poured upon the desolate.
I wrote all those verses to simply make this point. The Messiah has just been ( cut off ) and the ( sixty- nineth ) week has ended. I’m going to put one more verse here to finish my point. ( Romans 11:25 ) For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in.
If you read ( Romans 11 ), Israel has been cut of, placed on a shelf. That’s what happened when Jesus Christ died on the Cross. Israel, as a nation will remain ( cut off ) until ( the fulness of the Gentiles are all in ). The Church has just been born on the ( Day of Pentecost ) and, we do not know how long it will take for it to be ( all in ), meaning, every person that will become a member of that body by being ( born again ). When the ( fulness of the Gentiles ) are in then, God will take Israel off the shelf and she has One more week ) to complete.
Although, Joses the Levite might not understand all of this completely, he believes that Jesus Christ is the Messiah and he will making a powerful statement to the leaders of Israel. However, each person has to make their own choice. As we get into Acts, God has offered Israel the first chance to become members of the Church. ( it says to the Jew first ).
We must understand that ( Israel as a Nation ) and ( the Church ) are two completely differnt aspects of the will of God. The nation of Israel will inherit the earth. One day, right here on this earth, Jesus will be the KIng of Israel and, the earth will be their home. The Church, the body of Christ has its own home. We read about that place in ( Revelation 21 ). To better understand what we are seeing; although Jews are people of the Nation of Israel and, one day their nation will inherit this earth does not change the fact that they can also be born again and, a part of the bride of Christ. They can also live in the city described in ( Revelation 21 ). It’s the Nation of Israel that will inherit the earth. People live and die but, that nation will live forever.
Between ( Acts 4) with what we see Joses the Levite doing, the choice he is making and, ( Acts 5:1 ) with Ananias and Sapphira, we see the choice that has to be made. The nation of Israel is either going to ( sell out ) like Joses the Levite or; remain like Ananias and Sapphira.
In the sense in Believing and trusting God, the choice has always had to be made. It’s never been a time when putting your trust in God was not a necessity for each person to make a choice to be obedient to God. Where, Joses the Levite understood that simply being a jew was not enough, Ananias and Sapphira could not see that. They still thought that they were blessed by God just because they were Jews. If you think, by way of example that just because your mom and dad are members of a Church that you become a part of God’s family, you are badly mistaken, doesn’t work like that.
Before we close out this segment, let me give you something to think about. Let’s say, way back in ( Genesis 12 ) when God promised Abraham that his seed would be the father of a great nation, Isaac was born and Israel was born. What if Israel would have ( sold out ) all to God’s will at that time? Can you see how that all the people of this world would be under the leadership of the Nation of Israel?
Now, I know that all of this was in God’s complete plan. It’s always been God’s will for people to follow him, be submissive to him by choice not by force. Now we come to where we are in ( Acts ). The Church has just been born. When all is finished; Israel will inherit the earth and, The bride of Christ will be living with Jesus Christ ( her husband ) in a city of gold suspended above this earth. The earth wil be ( His Footstool ) ( Acts 7:49 ) Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is my place of rest? You can reference that verse back to scripture in the Old Testament.
Please understand, all of Israel, right after the day of Pentecost could have been born again and, became member of the Church. It was to ( the Jew first )( Acts 1:8 ) But ye shall receive power, after that the Holy Ghost is come upon you: and ye shall be witnesses unto me both in Jerusalem, and in Judaea, and in Samaria, and unto the uttermost part of the earth.( Romans 1:16 ) For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also the greek.
My point is this. Jesus Christ is King of Israel and the Church lives with him in our home. We, as the bride, his wife could be called ( Queen ). by marriage. Doesn’t that mean that Israel choose not to take, what we took by choice? We live in heaven, in a city suspended above earth and, the earth is the footstool of the King.
Please, don’t misunderstand. I say that just as humbly as I know how, meaning no disrespect. Israel is God’s chosen people and, actually it’s all because of them that we have salvation, thank our Lord for that. However, to the full extent of understanding, it is impossible for flesh to be pleasing to God. In order for any of us to please God, we must die to our fleshly will and seek to yield to him. That is the whole picture in a nutshell. Israel in the flesh, rejected. The Church in Spirit, yielded.
Always remember, if you are born once, you will die twice. If you are born twice, you only have to die once. Every born again believer is born the first time in our flesh. We could call that a type of Israel as a nation. The second time we are born is by the Spirit of God, the new birth ( born again ) that birth is the birth that God honors and lifts high into the heavens. The ( Spirit man ) is always placed above the ( physical man ). The sooner we learn that concept the more spiritual blessings we will have in this life.
One more point. At some point in the Old Testament the Nation Of Israel rejected God the Father. That being, in the mind of God. As far as God was concerned, they died at that moment. God doesn’t look at life and death like we do. As long as I am in sin ( unsaved ) ( not born again ) God see me as dead. The very second I am ( born again ). From that minute on, I will never face what God defines as death or dying. In the mind of God, I died to my flesh the second I was born into his family.
This is just one aspect of what I see in these verses. The next segment will deal with: ( ACTS 5:1 ) ANANIAS AND SAPPHIRA– HUSBAND AND WIFE