by Tammy Phillips
July 11, 2020
“For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” – Acts 4:20 NKJV
I am reading through Acts which was written between 60-160 and my mind is blown. I feel like I am reading the headlines from 2020. The Governor of California, Gavin Newson, ordered places of wordship to “discontinue singing.” Specifically, his order said:
“In particular, activities such as singing, and chanting negate the risk reduction achieved through six feet of physical distancing. Places of worship must therefore discontinue singing and chanting activities and limit indoor attendance to 25% of building capacity or a maximum of 100 attendees, whichever is lower.”
“Even with adherence to physical distancing, convening in a congregational setting of multiple different households to practice a personal faith carries a relatively higher risk for widespread transmission of the COVID-19 virus, and may result in increased rates of infection, hospitalization, and death, especially among more vulnerable populations.” (https://files.covid19.ca.gov/pdf/guidance-places-of-worship.pdf)
Peter and John received a similar order 2000 years ago after healing a lame man. The powers that be, the rulers, elders and scribes, said they could not deny the lame man’s healing…
“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. So, they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. – Acts 4:18 NKJV
They were under government order not to speak in the name of Jesus. They were threatened to not dare spread the hope of his resurrection and healing. The Governor of California has mirrored the words of the Sanhedrin, “Stop the spread! Stop singing about Jesus!” The boldness and authority of Christ in Peter and John answered,
“Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you and obey you rather than God, you must decide (judge). But we cannot help telling what we have seen and heard.” – Acts 4:19-20.
The governing authorities threatened the disciples again before they let them go. “Everybody was praising and glorifying God for what had occurred.” It was undeniable and they had no choice but to release them.
What Jesus did and continues to do is undeniable! We cannot be silenced. We cannot stop spreading the Hope. We cannot help singing and telling what we have seen and heard.
I enCOURAGE you to sing today. Praise Him for what He has done. Spread Hope. Spread Love. We, as sons and daughters, have been silent for too long. Encourage yourself and others. SING OUT LOUD. SPEAK OUT LOUD.
“Blessed are you when they revile and persecute you and say all kinds of evil against you falsely for My sake. Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, for great [is] your reward in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you. – Matthew 5:11-12 NKJV