Neither is there Salvation in any other

Neither is there Salvation in any other

Neither is there Salvation in any other

William Stout / General

 

Acts 4:1–3 NKJV

1 Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them,

2 being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.

3 And they laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening.

 

  • They were “greatly disturbed that they taught the people”
  • people still get “greatly disturbed” today when you preach the truth
  • that sin is still wrong
  • that there is only one name that can save you
  • that all other roads lead to destruction
  • Why is, that particular truth so hard to accept
  • We don’t mind being told that only gasoline will make our cars go
  • People spend millions of dollars trying to learn what is good for us to eat, and what is bad
  • Yet, they don’t want to be told that sin is bad for us
  • They “laid hands on them”
  • These were not merely idle threats, they had authority
  • things are not that much different today-
  • people still make threats and punish those who preach the truth
  • we just tend to stop when we are threatened – or adjust the message –
  • changing the message is actually worse, far worse than just not preaching it at all
  • The selfian gospel avoids conflict and pain in favor of a positive message that everyone likes

Acts 4:4 NKJV

4 However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.

  • Nevertheless, many people did hear
  • many of those who heard believed – about 5,000 men
  • When you preach the Word faithfully, God will bless it
  • you don’t know who is listening – just preach the Word
  • You may be surprised by who actually gets saved
  • Some will remember and get saved later – preach the Word!
  • It is hard, and it may cost you something, but is is worth it.
  • Consider the N. Korean man in the news this week

 

 

North Korean Choi Kwanghyuk is one of the lucky ones.

The 55-year-old managed to escape from the work camp where he was sent after being targeted and persecuted by the government for his Christian faith.

“We couldn’t raise our voice during a service, we couldn’t sing out loud during a worship … that was hard,” Choi told Fox News through a translator. “Also, we had to hide so that other people could not see us.”

Despite having to hide his faith in plain sight while living in North Hamgyong province, Choi was still compelled to bring religion to others when he started an underground church.

“There were about nine people,” he said. . . .

“If that information had leaked, we could have faced the death penalty.”  …..

“[Choi’s] statements describing oppression, as well as his report of imprisonment for owning a Bible or practicing faith, align with everything we know about North Korea,” Open Doors President David Curry told Fox News. . . .

“We had only one Bible,” he said. “North Hamgyong province is very cold. In the winter, we would dig a big hole and store kimchi there. We sometimes had services there. In the summer, we had services in the mountain or by the river.”

  • In spite of his suffering, he was still willing to start an underground church
  • how many people will be spending eternity in heaven because of him?

 

Acts 4:5–10 NKJV

5 And it came to pass, on the next day, that their rulers, elders, and scribes,

6 as well as Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the family of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem.

7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, “By what power or by what name have you done this?”

8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel:

9 If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well,

10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.

 

  • After being imprisoned overnight, they were brought to the rulers
  • “by what power, or authority have you done this”?
  • they could not deny that something had happened
  • But these were not “authorized” priests. They had no authority to preach or teach
  • they were not part of the establishment
  • their message was offensive also
  • What if we got our authority today from Jesus Christ directly?
  • Peter proclaimed- “let it be known to you all. . .
  • Oh how wonderful it would be if we would let it be known to all!!!
  • By the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified. . . By His Name!
  • This man is whole
  • We are still made whole today by the name of Jesus – to those who believe
  • Notice again the boldness.

Acts

Ordinary People – like you

How can you be acting out Acts?

  • Take a moment to remember the purpose of this series:
  • How can we apply this to our lives today?
  • Ordinary people: They were not the full time clergy
  • they had not yet been given titles and robes
  • These were ordinary people who loved Jesus Christ and were willing to be moved by His Spirit
  • What if you were willing to stop right in the middle of whatever to pray for those in need?
  • What if you were willing to tell those who were lost the way of salvation?
  • What if you were not afraid of the cost of discipleship, or the threats of the enemy?
  • What if you didn’t think you needed to wait for the Priest to minister the gospel?
  • What a City of God this would be!
  • What is stopping us from doing just that?
  • Is it sin? you have been redeemed
  • Is it guilt? You have been forgiven?
  • Is it lack? He shall supply all your need.
  • Is it fear? If God be for you who shall be against you?

Romans 8:35–39 NKJV

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

36 As it is written: “For Your sake we are killed all day long; We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come,

39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

  • If that love is in you and cannot be taken, then you can administer it to the world
  • too many people are waiting until they are “good enough” and don’t realize that you will never be gooder than you are. Your goodness is in Him

Acts 4:12 NKJV

12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

 

  • We must also be clear on this
  • Some surveys show that even many Christians think that there is more than one way to heaven
  • false teachers and false prophets come spew lies of universalism, often hidden in clever stories
  • like the Shack – for instance
  • The Bible is clear, and the early Christians were very clear
  • There is no other name under heaven
  • there never will be any other way. We must hold fast this truth – less we be false Christians ourselves
  • It is now more important than ever
  • If there were any other name, none of the Christians ever would have needed to be martyred
  • Stephen ought not to have preached to his death
  • So many who were burned alive, beheaded, tortured, could have gone on living
  • Much worse, if they died in vain, they would actually have been evil to have lead people to such unnecessary suffering and death
  • What a terribly distorted message
  • Folks you must decide – IF you believe these false teaching of universalism and salvation apart from repentance and eternal life apart from Christ, then you have rejected the Bible and the true Jesus
  • I love people who disagree with me
  • We should love the muslims, the atheists, the HIndus and Buddhists
  • But loving them does not make them right
  • we must love them enough to hold fast to the truth
  • We must love Jesus Christ enough not to deny Him for the sake of worldly ease
  • We should do it in love, with compassion, with sensitivity, and tactfully. But we must proclaim the truth
  • As Paul said “woe is me if I preach not the gospel”

Acts 4:13 NKJV

13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus.

  • Again, these people were not seminary graduates
  • thank God for Seminaries and bible colleges – we do not despise them
  • But that is not what qualifies you to be a Christian
  • That is not what empowers you to be a witness
  • The grace of God empowers you
  • the call of God compels you
  • Uneducated, untrained, yet filled with the Holy Spirit
  • They realized “they had been with Jesus”
  • Now that is what qualifies them
  • Have you been with Jesus?
  • Too many people try to get their authority from everywhere but Jesus –
  • Too often we have been to everyone else first
  • But have you been with Jesus?
  • Do you spend time with Him?
  • Do you talk to Him?
  • Do you enquire of Him?
  • Are you seeking Him?
  • Are you in His Word?
  • Are you meditating on What He said?
  • Have you been heeding what He instructed?
  • Are you “with Him” now? Is Christ in You?

Acts 4:17–20 NKJV

17 But so that it spreads no further among the people, let us severely threaten them, that from now on they speak to no man in this name.”

18 So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus.

19 But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge.

20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.”

  • They “threatened them” “severely” to speak no more in His name
  • The purpose of the threat was “so that it spread no further”
  • That is still the goal of the enemy today – to stop this spread of the gospel
  • What do we do when we are threatened?
  • We don’t usually get threatened with prison and beating here in America today –
  • like they did here in the Bible
  • Like they still do in places like N Korea
  • But we are threatened with other things we care about
  • Sometimes we are threatened with the loss of the comforts we have come to treasure so much
  • Some employers even “threaten” their employees not to say “Merry Christmas” so that it will spread no further
  • how many believers submit to these threats?
  • How preposterous that this is even an issue: What if Christians were offended by people saying “Happy holidays”? Should we have the right to control what they say?
  • We are threatened with loss of comfort, rejection, social status, friends, advancement, loss of business if we offend, etc.
  • too often we give in
  • or adjust our approach to “fit in” without offending anyone
  • We think we can show our Christianity through good conduct alone – apart from the gospel
  • I ask you to observe as we read through Acts, is that how they did it then?
  • Then why should we preach a different gospel?
  • Peter and John declared boldly, should we listen to you more than God?
  • Should we today?
  • We must speak the things we have seen and heard

 

 

Acts 4:21–32 NKJV

21 So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way of punishing them, because of the people, since they all glorified God for what had been done.

22 For the man was over forty years old on whom this miracle of healing had been performed.

23 And being let go, they went to their own companions and reported all that the chief priests and elders had said to them.

24 So when they heard that, they raised their voice to God with one accord and said: “Lord, You are God, who made heaven and earth and the sea, and all that is in them,

25 who by the mouth of Your servant David have said: ‘Why did the nations rage, And the people plot vain things?

26 The kings of the earth took their stand, And the rulers were gathered together Against the Lord and against His Christ.’

27 “For truly against Your holy Servant Jesus, whom You anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together

28 to do whatever Your hand and Your purpose determined before to be done.

29 Now, Lord, look on their threats, and grant to Your servants that with all boldness they may speak Your word,

30 by stretching out Your hand to heal, and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of Your holy Servant Jesus.”

31 And when they had prayed, the place where they were assembled together was shaken; and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.

32 Now the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul; neither did anyone say that any of the things he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common.

  • Again they lifted up their voices in “one accord”
  • They lifted up their voices to acknowledge God
  • They lifted up their voices to ask of God
  • They were in one accord in Worship
  • They were in one accord in praise
  • they were in one accord in resisting the threats
  • They were in one accord in Seeking Jesus
  • And when they prayed like that, the place was shaken
  • they were all filled with the Holy Spirit
  • they spoke the Word with Boldness

 

Acts 4:32–34 NKJV

32 Now the multitude of those who believed were of one heart and one soul; neither did anyone say that any of the things he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common.

33 And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.

34 Nor was there anyone among them who lacked; for all who were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold,

  • Those who believed had one heart
  • they had things in common- they didn’t say that things were their own
  • What if we really believed that everything under the whole heaven was His?
  • What if the things that we possessed were tools for the Glory of God?
  • What if we all had a kingdom mindset?
  • They had great power
  • grace was upon them all
  • None of them lacked

 

 

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