Obey God Not People; You Will Never Regret It

Obey God Not People; You Will Never Regret It If You Do What He Says!

Sound Truth Ministry Bible Lesson: Acts 5:29

picture of evening moon for the obey god bible lesson

Apostles chose to obey God

Acts 5:29-32 To this Peter and the apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than people. The God of our ancestors raised Jesus, whom you put to death by hanging him on a cross.

It is this Jesus whom God has exalted to his right hand, to be a guide and a Savior, to give Israel repentance and forgiveness of sins. And we are witness to the truth of this, and so is the Holy Spirit — the gift of God to those who obey him.” (OEB)

Do you obey God or people or your flesh (human nature)? The morals of society are changing. Less focus on what God says and more on what people want. Groups of people demand rights that do not align with God’s will. People may say it is okay, but God has the final say.

The apostles had to decide to obey God or do what the Sanhedrin[1] court (the council*) said. They suffered but chose to obey God. Are you willing to make that sacrifice?

*Note: The council consisted of: rulers, elders, and scribes (Acts 4:5). Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, Jonathan, Alexander, and as many as were of the family of the high priest (Acts 4:6). The chief priests (Acts 4:23; 5:24).

Apostles jailed/set free (Acts 5:17-21)

The jealous council

Why were the council members jealous (Weymouth says ‘filled with angry jealousy’[2])? The apostles were in the temple—the priests’ domain; they gaining the people’s trust (Acts 5:13-14). These priests were part of the high-and-mighty Sadducee[3] group.

Earlier they told Peter and John not to speak nor teach in the name of Jesus (Acts 4:18). This time, they put them in jail.

Note: This was the 2nd time Peter and John had been before the council (Acts 4:3).

Angel sets them free

The apostles had no reason to regret their decision to obey God and ignore the threats. An angel of the Lord released them and told them to continue. When you obey God, people cannot stop you.

Following Jesus

Again they enter the temple and do what the Lord sent them to do. Like Jesus, they went early in the morning (John 8:2; Acts 5:21). Are you doing what God wants/sent you to do?

Then early [the next] morning Jesus went into the Temple again. All the people gathered around Him and He sat down and began teaching them. John 8:2 (AUV)

graphic of psalms 16:11 for obey god bible lesson

from
Matthew 16:11
Jesus warns the disciples

Continue to obey God (Acts 5:22-32)

In the temple teaching

The apostles did not focus on the threats of the council. While the council met they were in the temple teaching. Your enemy may plot against you. While they plot; make sure you do as God told you.

“Do not teach about Jesus”

What people say should never override God and His word/will. The priests warned the apostles again. No surprise here; all of the apostles knew the position of the priests. Acts 4:23 says Peter and John (Acts 3:1) told the other apostles {their own companions} all that the priests said to them.

Did we not sternly command you that you should not teach in this name? and, behold, you have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and you intend to bring this man’s blood upon us. Acts 5:28 (RKJNT)

We must obey God, not people

Is it okay to ignore God’s instructions to please people? When the rules or laws made by people conflict with God’s; do what God says.

The apostles did not back down. Their purpose was clear, be witnesses for Christ. Before Jesus left them, He reminded them ‘you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem‘ (Acts 1:8; John 15:26-27).

picture of pacific ocean beach for obey god bible lesson

Have no regrets, obey God

Gamaliel speaks to the council (Acts 5:33-42)

If they are doing what God says…

How dare the apostles go against the rulers and elders? The members of the council were extremely angry and wanted to kill them. Gamaliel[4], a Pharisee teacher of the Law, cautioned the council. “If what the apostles teach is not of God, it will fail. If they are doing what God says, we cannot stop them” (Acts 5:38-39).

God sees all that you do. He knows why you do what you do. Do not focus on pleasing people, focus on pleasing God.

Apostles beaten and warned

The council accepted Gamaliel’s advice but decided to beat them. Jesus told his disciples this would happen. “They will deliver you up to councils; and you shall be beaten in the synagogues…” (Mark 13:9-11). He prepares His followers by telling what to expect. In Mark 13:23 He says, “take heed: behold, I have told you all things in advance.” [Read Mark 13:14-23]

Again, the council warns the apostles to not teach in Jesus name {or about Jesus} (Acts 5:40). I urge you to live, talk about, and follow Jesus!

Apostles rejoice and obey God

Jailed, beaten, and threatened, but they are happy. How strange or unusual? After all the council put them through, they rejoiced. The apostles did not regret their decision to do what they were called to do. They taught Jesus—the good news daily in the temple, and in every house.

Lesson Wrap-Up

At some time in your life, you did what you wanted. God was not part of your life. People may have influenced your decisions, but now? “Be like obedient children; do not let your lives be shaped by the passions which once swayed you in the days of your ignorance, but in your whole life show yourselves to be holy, after the pattern of the Holy One from whom you received your call.” 1 Peter 1:14-15 (OEB) [Read 1 Peter 1:13-21]

Hebrews 13:21 I pray that God will make you ready to obey him and that you will always be eager to do right. May Jesus help you do what pleases God. To Jesus Christ be glory forever and ever! Amen. (CEV)

How often have you had to choose between God and a person or people? The choice is yours; choose to obey God, you will never regret it!

Tim

Related Bible studies:

Respect God || Fear God || Do You Really Trust God? || Obedience to God – What Does the Bible Say?

Question for “obey God, not people”: Do you obey God’s word or follow people’s choices in marriage, sexual relations and other matters in life?

See what is available on the Sound Truth Ministry website.
References:

[1]The Sanhedrin court (council) || [2]Weymouth Acts 5:17 || [3]Sadducees || [4]Gamaliel – ISBE

Copyright information:

Scripture quotations marked (CEV) are from the Contemporary English Version Copyright © 1991, 1992, 1995 by American Bible Society, Used by Permission.


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