1. What if…Imaginative adventures in faith. Chapter 7: What if Sapphira had told the truth about the landed property? #Illuminare

2. (This question was submitted by Olubukola Deborah Ashley) #Illuminare

3. Just to be sure we’re talking about the same woman, Sapphira was the second half of that infamous duo in the Bible. #Illuminare

4. Sapphira and Ananias were the husband and wife team who sold property and made false asset declaration. #Illuminare

5. The whole thing had to do with a guy named Barnabas so let’s take a look at Barnabas. #Illuminare

6. Barnabas was the guy who went on a missionary journey with Paul. But that’s only half the story. #Illuminare

7. It was Barnabas who brought Paul “inside” when everyone was skittish about the genuineness of his conversion. (Acts 9:26-27) #Illuminare

8. Paul had gruesomely persecuted the church. Everyone was afraid of him. He was a vicious and highly motivated pitbull. #Illuminare

9. People like Paul don’t do half measure. He’s a commitment guy and Barnabas admired that in him. They had that in common. #Illuminare

10. Some of the Paul and Barnabas adventures sound Indiana Jones. The Lystrans wanted to sacrifice to them. (Acts 14:8-18) #Illuminare

11. They thought Paul and Barnabas were gods. Paul had healed a cripple. Only the gods could do that. (Acts 14:8-18) #Illuminare

12. Barnabas had this huge reputation and he had a profound influence on others, including Ananias. The guy was inspiring. #Illuminare

13. Unlike many early believers Barnabas was rich, had assets. Barnabas was actually not his baptismal name. It was a nickname. #Illuminare

14. His original name was Joe, as in Joses or the Greek variant, Joseph. So you can call Barnabas Apostle Joe! #Illuminare

15. He was probably named Barnabas because he kept on stepping up to the plate whenever the church had a need. #Illuminare

16. He kept rescuing the church, giving towards projects. Barnabas means “Son of Encouragement.” #Illuminare

17. Barnabas is the kind of guy a Pastor thanks God for, hence the nickname “Son of Consolation.” #Illuminare

18. But Barnabas wasn’t the only rich guy in church. There were other rich folks. #Illuminare

19. The rich guys wanted to help the poor so they set up a poverty alleviation fund. They sold assets and donated yield. #Illuminare

20. One of those rich guys was Ananias. As soon as he saw Barnabas donate proceeds from asset sale he became motivated. #Illuminare

21. He sold a property but then became “smart.” In complicity with his wife he kept back part of the proceeds. (Acts 5:1-2) #Illuminare

22. Which would have been okay if they had simply said they wanted to make a donation. But they wanted glory. #Illuminare

23. They made it seem like they were giving their all, like Barnabas. In truth they were kind of hedging their bet. #Illuminare

24. No one really knew what this new religious movement was all about or where it was headed. #Illuminare

25. It didn’t even have a name, no formal identity. The disciples won’t be known as Christians until much later. (Acts 11:26) #Illuminare

26. The summary is that both Ananias and Sapphira died of heart attack, right there in church. Everyone became afraid. #Illuminare

27. “…Everyone who heard of these things had a healthy respect for God. They knew God was not to be trifled with.” (Acts 5:11) #Illuminare

28. Don’t mess around with God. This “Christian thing” is potent stuff. (Acts 5:11) #Illuminare

29. But here’s the challenge. Ananias and Sapphira were both under grace. And they were baptized with the Holy Spirit. #Illuminare

30. Like Ananias and Sapphira modern day Christians lie to their pastors yet they don’t fall dead in church. Question is why? #Illuminare

31. Why was the sin of Ananias and Sapphira sin unto death? (1 John 5:16) #Illuminare

32. The only other instance of sin unto death in the New Testament was found among the Corinthians. #Illuminare

33. They didn’t honour the body of Christ at communion. They drank and ate God’s judgment upon themselves. (I Cor. 11:29) #Illuminare

34. Clearly Ananias & Sapphira didn’t honour the Body. They lied to the Holy Spirit & so violated unity of the Body. (Acts 1:14) #Illuminare

35. The unity of the Body and the operation of the Holy Spirit are coextensive. (Psalm 133:1-2) #Illuminare

36. But there were other factors responsible for their demise – political factors. This was an epochal period. #Illuminare

37. It was the beginning of the Church age, the formalization of the constitution of what we now know as the Body of Christ. #Illuminare

38. Christ had taken up session in Heaven as the Sheblimini – the One who sits on the right hand of Majesty on high. #Illuminare

39. Events on earth were being synchonised with the new reality in Heaven – the Christ with a mystic body made up of humans. #Illuminare

40. God had also just signed a new social contract with mankind, and human calendar had just changed, from BC to AD. #Illuminare

41. The correction of the Adamic distortion had also begun. The Last Adam had just assumed federal status. #Illuminare

42. And the world was transitioning from the jurisdiction of the Law to the dispensation of grace. #Illuminare

43. (Grace is a calendric political dispensation, not some I’m feeling good I can do whatever I like stuff). #Illuminare

44. The Spirit had also just assumed Directorship on earth. This was a political role – liaison between Kingdom Annex and HQ. #Illuminare

45. This wasn’t the time to pull off the kind of stunt Ananias and Sapphira concocted. The earth was too politically charged. #Illuminare

46. Everything was political at that moment; it’s why a misdemeanor would turn into capital offence and criminal conspiracy. #Illuminare


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