But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,…
The Church may defy the malice of her foes, but cannot afford to pass over faithlessness of professed friends. The Jews are borne with; hypocritical pretenders are visited with Divine vengeance. The sin here consisted in false pretence and misrepresentation.
I. THE CHURCH IS NOT A PURE, UNMIXED SOCIETY OF PERFECTED BELIEVERS. Members of the Apostolic Church fell into gross sin. Perfection is not to be looked for in the nursery or school. The Church is a training-ground of the immature, and yet men unreasonably expect perfection.
II. THERE IS NO ABSOLUTE SAFETY IN THE CHURCH. There is danger necessarily involved in the weakness of all undeveloped life. The Church is not shielded from temptation. Wilfulness may lead to shipwreck of faith. New conditions of life involve new dangers. "Let him that thinketh he standeth," etc.
III. MORAL DANGERS MAY BE INCREASED BY THOSE WHO ARE NEAREST TO US IN THE RELATIONSHIPS OF LIFE. A man and his wife joined together in this sin. The perversion of family and social life to the degradation of spirits is not enough considered. If a husband induce his wife or a master his servant to violate conscience, neither need be surprised at reaping bitter fruit.
IV. WILFUL SIN PERSISTED IN BY MEMBERS OF THE CHURCH INVOLVES THEM IN DIRE AND AWFUL CALAMITIES. "Whose fan is in His hand."
(W. H. Davison.)
Parallel VersesKJV: But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,