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The Truth Cannot Be Silenced
by Wayne Blank
"Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto Thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak Thy Word"
It was, in part, a great irony. The office of high priest was instituted by God as a foreshadow of the Christ (see What Is Jesus Christ Doing Right Now?), but when He came at last, the high priest not only failed to recognize Who He was, he actually had Him killed. That part is not entirely ironic - the high priest was to be responsible for the Passover lamb (see Christ's Passover) and the blood on the Day of Atonement (see Christ's Day Of Atonement). Nevertheless, the high priest was supposed to be a servant of The Lord, not an unbeliever in Jesus Christ. He also ordered the "unlearned and ignorant" apostles to stop preaching the Gospel, as quoted in the verses above. But what did Peter and John do? Their answer:
"But Peter and John answered and said unto them, Whether it be right in the sight of God to hearken unto you more than unto God, judge ye. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.
Peter and John managed to get out of the situation with their lives, but it's obvious that they would have died then and there rather than be voluntarily silenced. They realized however that they would need The Lord's protection. If they hadn't already asked for it, it seems that they decided that it was time that they did, "Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto Thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak Thy Word."
"And being let go, they went to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said unto them. And when they heard that, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, Lord, thou art God, which hast made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all that in them is: Who by the mouth of Thy servant David [see King David] hast said, Why did the heathen rage, and the people imagine vain things? The kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against his Christ.
Their prayer was answered.
"And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the word of God with boldness." (Acts 4:31 KJV)
Fact Finder: The apostle Peter was regarded as "unlearned and ignorant" while the apostle Paul, the Pharisee, was a man of great education. What made them equals as servants of God?