Friday, February 25, 2011

You Ratlesnake, You!

In the past couple of days I have found myself in the position to advise an old friend who is facing divorce...I have without hesitation urged him to try to make it work, encouraged him that every marriage has rough spots, and we all have had to really work to keep it together along the way.

Well, I felt that maybe there would be some resources out there that I could recommend, so I did a little looking on line and I came across a message with an interesting, and convicting take on the well known story of Ananias and Sapphira from Acts 5:1-11. As it often happens when I go to God's Word to minister to the needs of another I get hit smack dab between the eyes with a message straight from the Holy Spirit for little ole me.

But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles' feet. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things. And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him. And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in. And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much? And she said, Yea, for so much. Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out. Then fell she down straightway at his feet, and yielded up the ghost: and the young men came in, and found her dead, and, carrying her forth, buried her by her husband. And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things.

The sin that this couple were killed for is not that they held back their money from God, they were not required to give him any of it, let alone ALL of it as they were trying to convince everyone that they were doing. They were guilty of lying to the Holy Spirit, AKA God. In doing so, they were hypocrites.
The word "hypocrite" actually means "one who wears a mask". They called actors in the ancient days this, because they wore masks in the plays to appear as someone they were not.

That reminded me of one of my favorite scenes of one of my favorite movies, Singing In The Rain. Watch as they show you what I mean.

How many times have we done this very same thing? We are miserable on the inside, we are rude and thoughtless to our spouse in our home, everyone who lives there knows it. The tension is commonplace, but then we have guests for dinner, or we are out at a church function....and we put on the mask? It is really quite ridiculous isn't it? And who are we fooling? Are we fooling our spouse? Our children? The Holy Spirit, who is God? No. Let's take off the mask, and let's try to walk the talk. I am not saying, let's air our dirty laundry in public, I am saying let's get out the detergent and the stain stick and get the laundry as clean as we can. I see what God thinks about lying to the Holy Spirit in Acts 5, and I want to take off the mask, and let the real me give God what he deserves.

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