In neither case do we get the impression they died naturally. And even more of concern, to what would this lead? If it was of God, there was nothing they could do to stop it. They began to squabble among themselves. 22 But the officers who came did not find them in the prison; and they returned, and reported back, 23 saying, “We found the prison house locked quite securely and the guards standing at the doors; but when we had opened up, we found no one inside.” 24 Now when the captain of the temple guard and the chief priests heard these words, they were greatly perplexed about them as to what would come of this. The intensity of their anger and evil intentions can be seen by what they did do to the twelve. The Sanhedrin is powerless, and yet Peter and the other apostles are used as God’s instruments to heal men and women, even if it is by their shadow falling upon the ailing, so that they are made whole. The conspiracy of the Sanhedrin was equally futile, as our text in Acts chapter 5 makes very clear. [Acts 5:12-42] August 30. They kept right on teaching and preaching Jesus as the Christ. This was, we should note, the first instance of physical suffering for the name of Christ, and the apostles were able to rejoice in their sufferings because it was for the name of Christ and for the sake of the gospel. Acts 8:5-24. Now that is the restraint of God. Their authority and leadership was about to end, just as the kingdom in Israel was about to be done away with, at least for a time. It is not, finally, men who are the problem. Finally someone stood up and said, "What's the matter with us? 38 “And so in the present case, I say to you, stay away from these men and let them alone, for if this plan or action should be of men, it will be overthrown; 39 but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them; or else you may even be found fighting against God.” 40 And they took his advice, and after calling the apostles in, they flogged them and ordered them to speak no more in the name of Jesus, and then released them. God was going to reject Israel’s leaders as well, removing them and putting others in charge. 13No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people. Many people in our country have never heard the gospel, but most have heard, or have had the opportunity to hear. The men you put in jail are standing in the temple courts teaching the people." It was undoubtedly a serious beating, and the pain and injuries sustained would have been substantial. They would find it difficult to press through the crowds to get to the apostles anyway, but they know, from reports and experience, that the apostles must come to the temple area and depart from it each day. But God wants us to look beyond this immediate opposition of men and understand that the opposition would never occur if it were not for the existence of certain malevolent beings behind men. You go through problems, difficulties, heartaches, disappointments, ostracism and coolness from others, all for the sake of "the Name." Those preachers push this idea into a right and demand of being able to name and claim whatever you want from God. There is an inward change that is never lost, it goes on forever. We shall pick up our study in Acts, the fifth chapter, beginning with Verse 12. And so I am not so sure that his premise was correct, even though his advice may have been, in this instance. 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