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Peter The Political Prisoner

"Now about that time Herod the king stretched forth his hands to vex certain of the church. And he killed James the brother of John with the sword. And because he saw it pleased the Jews, he proceeded further to take Peter also. Then were The Days Of Unleavened Bread. And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people." (Acts 12:1-4 KJV)
(Note: the King James Version use of "Easter" in Acts 12:4 is a blatant mistranslation; the actual word written in the Holy Scriptures was Passover (as further proven by the reference to the Days of Unleavened Bread), as most other translations correctly render it e.g. "And when he had seized him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four squads of soldiers to guard him, intending after the Passover to bring him out to the people" RSV)

"And his chains fell off from his hands"

Herod's (see The Herods) attack upon the Church was politically, not religiously, motivated. Unbelieving Jews opposed believing Jews (nearly all of the first Christians were Jews who never thought of starting a "new" religion - they simply recognized the long-awaited Messiah when He came) for religious reasons, but the Romans attacked the Church for political reasons. Why was the Church regarded as a very real political threat, just as it still is today? Why did Herod imprison Peter as a political prisoner? Because the true Gospel is about the coming Kingdom of God on earth that is going to conquer and abolish all of man's carnal, self-serving "Babylon" political systems (man's "Babylon" applies as much to politics as it does to religion). A new world is coming (see the Fact Finder question below).

Peter's Ministry, Peter's appointed time of service, was not yet complete, so The Lord sent an angel free Peter from a heavily-fortified Roman military prison where political prisoners were kept.


"Peter therefore was kept in prison: but prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for him."

"And when Herod would have brought him forth, the same night Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains: and the keepers before the door kept the prison. And, behold, the angel of the Lord came upon him, and a light shined in the prison: and he smote Peter on the side, and raised him up, saying, Arise up quickly. And his chains fell off from his hands."

"And the angel said unto him, Gird thyself, and bind on thy sandals. And so he did. And he saith unto him, Cast thy garment about thee, and follow me. And he went out, and followed him; and wist not that it was true which was done by the angel; but thought he saw a vision. When they were past the first and the second ward, they came unto the iron gate that leadeth unto the city; which opened to them of his own accord: and they went out, and passed on through one street; and forthwith the angel departed from him."

"And when Peter was come to himself, he said, Now I know of a surety, that the Lord hath sent his angel, and hath delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews."

"And when he had considered the thing, he came to the house of Mary the mother of John, whose surname was Mark; where many were gathered together praying. And as Peter knocked at the door of the gate, a damsel came to hearken, named Rhoda. And when she knew Peter's voice, she opened not the gate for gladness, but ran in, and told how Peter stood before the gate."

"And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel."

"But Peter continued knocking: and when they had opened the door, and saw him, they were astonished. "But he, beckoning unto them with the hand to hold their peace, declared unto them how the Lord had brought him out of the prison. And he said, Go show these things unto James, and to the brethren. And he departed, and went into another place." (Acts 12:5-17 KJV)

Fact Finder: How will Christ rule the world so that it will become a true paradise?
See The Coming World Dictator

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