Preaching Christ - Not Law.



Preaching Christ - Not Law.

Acts 8:18-24

When Simon saw that the Spirit was given at the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money and said, "Give me also this ability so that everyone on whom I lay my hands may receive the Holy Spirit."
Peter answered: "May your money perish with you, because you thought you could buy the gift of God with money! You have no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God. Repent of this wickedness and pray to the Lord. Perhaps he will forgive you for having such a thought in your heart. For I see that you are full of bitterness and captive to sin."

Then Simon answered, "Pray to the Lord for me so that nothing you have said may happen to me."

Looking at Simon's sin here and realizing that the apostles would be preaching Christ and the new covenant, I might say that if in Christ, Simon was innocent because he was blind to his wrong, but Peters words told Simon how He'd pay if he were judged by the law, and then referred to the forgiveness of Christ, knowing that these words will bring Him to knowledge of his sin, forcing him to edify himself, but more importantly, leading him to realize his desperate need for a savior. The words were not to make Him aware of the law for the sake of his righteousness under it - for he would never be right under it.

Next time we want to tell someone what they're doing wrong, let's think about whether our words are going to place them under the law for the sake of them to edify and hopelessly try to perfect themselves, or whether they're going to demonstrate the grace of the Lord. You might be more affective, not telling them of all their sins, and judging them by law, but rather setting an example by being like Jesus, and encouraging their behavior when it is like Jesus'. That will bring in the power that is the Lord's rather than what they'll feel is the hopeless, nagging, judgment of the law.

I knew a "Simon" who thought that he could do spiritual things without the Spirit of God; for his own gain. It is a spiritual blindness that we, in our flesh are not able to understand until the Holy Spirit's illumination allows us. This passage is not preached very much but you did an EXCELLENT job in "unpacking it"...thank you Mark...

My saying is
"I didn't understand that I didn't understand,
until I understood"