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Feb 11, 2018


Acts 12:1-25

God opposes and humbles the proud.

“For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”  Luke 14:11

Satan who sought to exalt himself over God was cast down from heaven.

He has always sought to destroy the redemptive work of God. And yet he has failed. 

When the enemy seems to win a few battles, we need to remember that God has won the war.

The “Herods” of the day.

Herod the Great, order for all male children 2 years of age and younger to be killed in Bethlehem and the surrounding region, so as to kill this Christ who would threaten his rule.

We must remember that the enemy may bruise the heel, but our Wounded Victor has crushed the enemy. (Genesis 3:15)

Herod (Agrippa I) who sought to exalt himself was taken out by God.

Killing James and imprisoning Peter (Acts 12:2-3)

“Immediately an angel of the Lord struck him down because he did not give God the glory, and he was eaten by worms and breathed his last.”  Acts 12:23

We are often more concerned about pleasing people than we are pleasing God, and that is self-exaltation.

“For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God?  Or am I trying to please man?  If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ.”  Galatians 1:10

Implication:  Surrender is the only way you’ll find victory.

God hears the prayers of His people.

  • The consistent practice of the New Testament church was that of fervent prayer.

“So Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church.”  Acts 12:5

“ . . . where many were gathered together and praying.”  Acts 12:12b

Prayer should be the Spirit led discipline of our life so that when the enemy attacks, our first response should be unceasing, intense, and persevering prayer. 

We do not give in because the enemy is too strong, but because our praying is too weak.

God always advances His gospel. 

“But the word of God increased and multiplied.”  Acts 12:24

 Tertullian, the Christian defender of the faith who died in 225, said to his enemies, "We multiply whenever we are mown down by you; the blood of Christians is [the] seed [of the church]." (Apololgeticus 50). And Jerome said about 100 years later, "The church of Christ has been founded by shedding its own blood, not that of others; by enduring outrage, not by inflicting it. Persecutions have made it grow; martyrdoms have crowned it" (Letter 82).