When thou shalt vow a vow unto the Lord thy God, thou shalt not slack to pay it: for the Lord thy God will surely require it of thee. Deuteronomy 23:21.
The brief but terrible history of Ananias and Sapphira is traced by the pen of inspiration for the benefit of all who profess to be the followers of Christ. This important lesson has not rested with sufficient weight upon the minds of our people…. This one marked evidence of God’s retributive justice is fearful, and should lead all to fear and tremble to repeat sins which brought such a punishment….
Ananias and his wife Sapphira had the privilege of hearing the gospel preached by the apostles…. While under the direct influence of the Spirit of God, they made a pledge to give to the Lord certain lands; but when they were no longer under this heavenly influence, the impression was less forcible, and they began to question and draw back from fulfilling the pledge which they had made…. Covetousness was first cherished; then, ashamed to have their brethren know that their selfish souls grudged that which they had solemnly dedicated and pledged to God, deception was practiced…. When convicted of their falsehood, their punishment was instant death.
Not to the early church only, but to all future generations, this example of God’s hatred of covetousness, fraud, and hypocrisy, was given as a danger-signal…. When the heart is stirred by the influence of the Holy Spirit, and a vow is made to give a certain amount, the one who vows has no longer any right to the consecrated portion. Promises of this kind made to men would be looked upon as binding; are those not more binding that are made to God? …
Many spend money lavishly in self-gratification. Men and women consult their pleasure and gratify their taste, while they bring to God, almost unwillingly, a stinted offering. They forget that God will one day demand a strict account of how His goods have been used, and that He will no more accept the pittance they hand into the treasury than He accepted the offering of Ananias and Sapphira.
Conflict and Courage p. 330
Prayer Requests
—–I need prayer for work for favor with Bonnie and Sandra to keep my current full time job. I also need wisdom on or in my finances. Thanks in advance. ANN
—–My daughter’s mother in law is in need of healing prayers. Jane
—–Please pray for a friend and her family. God knows the situation. R
Dear Friends,
My mother often told me about a little spider monkey she saw in a pet store that touched her heart. When I was a baby, my mother would sometimes take me out for a long walk. Often this was on the weekend when my grandfather wanted to sleep. On one such outing, she was getting tired of pushing my stroller and decided to rest a little by looking around inside a pet store. My mother loved animals and animals seemed to know instantly that she was their friend.
Once inside, my mother saw a spider monkey in a large cage. She thought I would enjoy watching the monkey, so she put my stroller near the cage to keep me occupied while she looked around the store. As she was looking, she began talking to the clerk. They had not talked long, when they heard the monkey making quite a commotion. Fearing for her baby, my mother rushed over to where she had left me. Once she realized that I was fine, she looked to see what problem the monkey was having. It was acting strangely, crying and reaching toward me through the cage, then folding her arms as though cradling a baby. My mother wondered why this little monkey was acting so strangely.
The clerk had come over by that time and explained that this little, mother monkey had recently had a baby, but it had not lived more than a week or two. She had been very sad and just sat in her cage dejectedly, mourning for her baby. When she saw me, she realized in her little monkey brain that I was a baby. She was making all that commotion in her efforts to reach me. In her little mother-heart she longed to hold me and cuddle me to replace the baby she had lost.
How much sadness sin has caused. Paul reminds us, “For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now.” Rom 8:22 This is so true. Our Great Creator made a perfect world with perfect creatures on it. At the end of each day, He pronounced His creation very good. He entrusted His perfect world to Adam and Eve. They were to be its caretakers. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” Gen 1:28
Sadly, Adam and Eve did not continue to obey God’s commands. They listened to the enemy when he suggested that God was withholding some wonderful experience from them. “Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden? And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden: But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die. And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.” 3:1-5 When they sinned, they brought a great downward change not only upon themselves, but also upon the plants and animals.
That one act brought such a change upon this world. The trees lost their leaves, weeds sprang up, animals became ferocious and devoured one another. Pain and misery prevailed upon both man and beast. As the millennia have gone by, the effect of sin has grown. All has become weaker and more decayed. Sorrow and sadness are everywhere, upon every creature. Mankind has had its part in making it thus.
Yet, it will not always be this way. Our Dear Saviour is coming to “destroy them which destroy the earth.” Rev 11:18 With longing, we look forward to the time when sin and sorrow will be no more. We are waiting with great desire to see the day when “the wolf also shall dwell with the lamb, and the leopard shall lie down with the kid; and the calf and the young lion and the fatling together; and a little child shall lead them. And the cow and the bear shall feed; their young ones shall lie down together: and the lion shall eat straw like the ox. And the sucking child shall play on the hole of the asp, and the weaned child shall put his hand on the cockatrice’ den.” “For, behold, I create new heavens and a new earth: and the former shall not be remembered, nor come into mind….And they shall build houses, and inhabit them; and they shall plant vineyards, and eat the fruit of them. They shall not build, and another inhabit; they shall not plant, and another eat: for as the days of a tree are the days of my people, and mine elect shall long enjoy the work of their hands. They shall not labour in vain, nor bring forth for trouble; for they are the seed of the blessed of the LORD, and their offspring with them. And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear. The wolf and the lamb shall feed together, and the lion shall eat straw like the bullock: and dust shall be the serpent’s meat. They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain, saith the LORD.” Isa 11:6-8;65:17, 21-25
John exclaims, “And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. And I John saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. And he that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.” Rev 21:1-5
May that day come soon. May we all be ready for the grand and glorious appearing of our Dear Saviour. May we then look up and say, “Lo, this is our God; we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is the LORD; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation.” Isa 25:9

Mishandling God’s Goods
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