Sharleen Stone hosted the Feb. 26 meeting of the Wednesday Bible Study Club at the Black Horse Restaurant. Robbie Pierson led the study of Mark, Chapter 5.
The first 11 verses of this chapter tell of Ananais, who, along with his wife, Sapphira, sold a piece of property they owned. They brought the proceeds of the sale and laid it at the apostles’ feet. But they did not turn all the proceeds over to the apostles; they withheld a portion of the proceeds for themselves.
This sin of Ananais and Sapphira of withholding some of the proceeds does not seem such a great sin. However, it is a double sin of dishonesty and deceit. The two of them were struck dead. Their sin was a lie to the Holy Spirit and to God.
These verses show us the early church was not perfect. The Bible paints a picture of the early church – warts and all.
Verses 12 through 16 describe Solomon’s Colonnade (or Porch) in the Temple. This was a large pavilion with marble columns on the east side of the temple. It was in this area that rabbis taught small groups. It was a place for entering the temple. And it was in this area that Jesus had driven out the money changers. This, now, was the place where the young believers gathered. The sick and tormented were brought here for healing.
All the activity that was focused on Peter and John and the rest of the apostles gained the envious attention of the High Priest who ordered their arrest in verses 17 through 32. The High Priest and the Sanhedrin had ordered the apostles to abstain from teaching in the name of Jesus. The concern was not so much what was being taught by the apostles, but rather they feared the assembling of such large crowds would bring about unrest and volatile actions which would attract the attention and interference of Rome.