Deception Exposed and Punished
Acts 5:1-11
But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,…


1. The possession devoted. "Ananias with Sapphira his wife sold a possession" (Acts 3:45; 4:34; Leviticus 27:28; Ecclesiastes 5:4).

2. The part kept back (Malachi 3:8; Joshua 7:11; John 12:6; 1 Timothy 6:10).

3. Counterfeit benevolence. Lessons:

(1)  Has as its motive the praise of men rather than the approval of God.

(2)  Aims chiefly at making a big impression upon people.

(3)  Aims to give in such a way as shall most advertise the donor.

(4)  Always tries to get credit for giving more than it actually does.


1. The source of the sin (ver. 3; John 13:27; Ephesians 4:27; James 4:7).

2. The inexcusableness of the sin (ver. 4; Leviticus 1:3; Exodus 25:2; 2 Corinthians 9:7).

3. The nature of the sin. Thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God (Psalm 51:4; Genesis 39:9; Luke 15:21). Lessons:

(1)  Sin is suggested by Satan.

(2)  No sin is unavoidable — "Why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie?"

(3)  Sin is inexcusable — no one can plead compulsion.

(4)  Sin is never concealed from the eyes of God.

(5)  Sin is not so much a trespass against men, as a trespass against God.


1. Ananias.

(1)  The judgment. "Fell down and gave up the ghost" (chap. Acts 13:11; Numbers 16:32; 2 Kings 1:12).

(2)  The effect. "Great fear" (Leviticus 10:3; Numbers 16:34; Deuteronomy 13:11).

(3)  The burial (Leviticus 10:5; 2 Samuel 18:17; John 19:40).

2. Sapphira.

(1)  Her examination (Revelation 2:21; 2 Peter 3:9).

(2)  Her sin pointed out (Proverbs 11:21; Exodus 17:7; 1 Corinthians 10:9).

(3)  Her sentence (Proverbs 19:9; Psalm 55:23; Job 31:3; Proverbs 29:1).

3. The great fear (Psalm 111:10; Matthew 10:28; Philippians 2:12). Lessons:

(1)  Judgment may tarry, but it is sure to come at the last as a lightning stroke.

(2)  In the day of judgment all hypocrites will be exposed.

(3)  Judgment is not pronounced until opportunity for repentance is given.

(4)  Judgment upon one or two often is mercy to the many.

(5)  The judgments of God upon iniquity should cause a wholesome fear of the Lord.

(6)  The judgments of God are to be feared by the workers of iniquity. There are limits even to His forbearance.

(Sunday School Times.)

Parallel Verses
KJV: But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession,

WEB: But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira, his wife, sold a possession,

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