Scripture - Acts 4:18-19 - So they called them and ordered them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in God’s sight to listen to you rather than to God, you must judge;
Theme - powers of the age
Devotion - In our stories last week and this week, Peter has been revealing the truth behind popular and widely accepted lies. Last week he revealed to the crowds that they had been manipulated by the religious and politically powerful, to act against their own interests and advocate for the death of Jesus. This week he reveals the truth behind the political and religious powers.
Peter reveals this truth when he responds to the final command of the powerful. They claim the authority to control Peter's speech. But there is more going on here than an attempted violation of Peter's rights. And his response reveals it. He asks whether it is right for him to obey the powers rather than God. Which is inspires two more interesting revelations. The powers are claiming ultimate authority in their command. They do not serve the spiritual or material interests of the people, but themselves. In serving themselves they have given themselves to other gods of the age. The first of those being the god of supremacy who places them over others. In order to maintain power, they are willing to do violence. That is another god they worship. They maintain power because it positions them for wealth. So that is another of the gods they worship.
But how is Peter able to discern the truth behind the official story of the authorities who claim to serve and represent God? Because he has seen their rule from the underside. He witnessed the unjust suffering and death of Jesus. He continues to see that unjust suffering in the paralyzed man who sits outside the temple. When we not only worship Jesus, but follow him, which means we see the world through his experience, we begin to learn how to discern the truth of the powers and authorities.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.