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Acts 4

12 There is salvation in no one else! God has given no other name under heaven by which we must be saved."
  13 The members of the council were amazed when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, for they could see that they were ordinary men with no special training in the Scriptures. They also recognized them as men who had been with Jesus.14 But since they could see the man who had been healed standing right there among them, there was nothing the council could say.15 So they ordered Peter and John out of the council chamber* and conferred among themselves.
  16 "What should we do with these men?" they asked each other. "We can't deny that they have performed a miraculous sign, and everybody in Jerusalem knows about it.17 But to keep them from spreading their propaganda any further, we must warn them not to speak to anyone in Jesus' name again."18 So they called the apostles back in and commanded them never again to speak or teach in the name of Jesus.
  19 But Peter and John replied, "Do you think God wants us to obey you rather than him?20 We cannot stop telling about everything we have seen and heard."
  21 The council then threatened them further, but they finally let them go because they didn't know how to punish them without starting a riot. For everyone was praising God22 for this miraculous sign—the healing of a man who had been lame for more than forty years.

The Believers Pray for Courage
23 As soon as they were freed, Peter and John returned to the other believers and told them what the leading priests and elders had said.24 When they heard the report, all the believers lifted their voices together in prayer to God: "O Sovereign Lord, Creator of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them—25 you spoke long ago by the Holy Spirit through our ancestor David, your servant, saying,

'Why were the nations so angry?
  Why did they waste their time with futile plans?
26 The kings of the earth prepared for battle;
  the rulers gathered together
against the LORD
  and against his Messiah.'*

  27 "In fact, this has happened here in this very city! For Herod Antipas, Pontius Pilate the governor, the Gentiles, and the people of Israel were all united against Jesus, your holy servant, whom you anointed.28 But everything they did was determined beforehand according to your will.29 And now, O Lord, hear their threats, and give us, your servants, great boldness in preaching your word.30 Stretch out your hand with healing power; may miraculous signs and wonders be done through the name of your holy servant Jesus."
  31 After this prayer, the meeting place shook, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit. Then they preached the word of God with boldness.

The Believers Share Their Possessions
32 All the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had.33 The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God's great blessing was upon them all.34 There were no needy people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them35 and bring the money to the apostles to give to those in need.
  36 For instance, there was Joseph, the one the apostles nicknamed Barnabas (which means "Son of Encouragement"). He was from the tribe of Levi and came from the island of Cyprus.37 He sold a field he owned and brought the money to the apostles.

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4:15 Greek the Sanhedrin.
4:25-26 Or his anointed one; or his Christ. Ps 2:1-2.

I recommend the NLT second edition because it is very clear and helpful. It has been a very useful tool in communicating Scriptural truths. I love the NLT!

Rick Romano
East Hills Alliance Church
Kelso, Washington

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