Peter said the words of God is not the private interpretation of man, meaning that the Word of God did not originate from man no matter how great an intellect he may be (II Peter 1:20-21). Among the Jews, from a very early period, two modes of interpreting Scripture existed, the literal and the allegorical or Spiritual. They might be people who appear to have much Godly Wisdom; have memorized God’s Word, but they might be breaking God’s Commandments in their thoughts, and by their deeds! No matter how Godly and amazing you appear to people on the outside, we cannot fool God. Notwithstanding the respect which Jesus paid to the teachings of the scribes and Pharisees, he is said to have seriously upbraided them with concealing Truths from their listeners relating to The Kingdom of heaven, shutting it up against men, not entering in themselves, nor yet suffering others to enter in.
We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: (2 Peter 1:19)
Peter tells us of their small subculture that has developed where groups of people followed their example and gave up their earthly possessions to keep the followers of Yeshua financially afloat. Peter established a community-based Church, who, in stark contrast to the Temple goers, operated in houses, homes and in public areas.
The first converts came together, and all things were shared. All property and possessions were sold and the proceeds divided between each other. Whoever needed was given to and to whoever something was given without any expectation of them having to repay their debts. Day in and day out, they persisted as a unit and shared their food, clothes and everything. They started home-to-home prayer meetings and held celebrated communion, they praised the Mighty Yahweh in joy and praised Yahweh for His goodness. Acts 5 tells a story where Ananias and his wife Safira, only held back a little money after they sold their property and shared the money with the community. When Peter questioned why he did not give everything he admitted to wrongdoing. Peter reminded him right away that he has not lied to men, but to Yahweh. Within moments after he heard the words, he dropped dead. His wife Safira, arriving three hours later, probably from one or another store where she spends his little shopping money, asked where Ananias was. Peter informed her of his death and asked her the same kind of question as Ananias. She knew there and then that she was following her husband’s fate. His words were barely uttered and she died on the spot.
Now it may sound like Peter's own doing, but here we are aware of an announcement or foreknowledge that Peter possessed of what will happen in the near future, rather than what will be his own actions. The exact operation of the miracle here is very interesting; Yahweh, not Peter, claimed these two people's lives based on their veiled motives. Peter, Yeshua and all Apostles practiced healing, forgiveness and mercy, but here are people immediately sentenced to death because of a single offense. It sounds like we just read a piece from the Old Testament? A strict Law was here punished by death? God can and does kill people on the spot. Here are some more references to testify of this.
Genesis 19:26; Leviticus 10:1-2; Numbers 16:31-35, 48-50; 2 Samuel 6:6-9, 12:15-23; 2 Kings 10:1-30; Jeremiah 28:13-17; 1 Kings 13:21-26; Acts 5:1-11; 1 Samuel 2:25.
This contrasting observance will empower many an atheist to have fun with and he will certainly labor the argument by which Yahweh is not a peace-loving teddy bear who preach only joy, peace and forgiveness. Even Yeshua, whose life was filled, did not do such things. Although Peter, like other Apostles, were given the authority to do wonders, it is upon closer scrutiny that we see it was Yahweh that commanded the action. Peter's behavior before and after the incident stressed that he does not see himself as the person who took the ruling and he simply continued as if nothing had changed!
This proved that a partial surrender of property, adjoined with this conduct, was not a sufficient claim for the privilege of discipleship with Jesus; all must be abandoned, or the forfeit was insufficient. So, it was with the Essenes, Jesus and the disciples. They all had one purse. When food was required, the disciples went singly or together to purchase it. They received constant rejuvenation from the community of believers, day in and day out! Biblical rejuvenation is a birth by which the innermost part of man’s being, the deeply hidden Spirit, is renewed and indwelt by the Spirit of God. Yeshua talked about the fate of self-deceived false converts who merely had come to the edge of saving faith - but they eventually reject or walk away from the Truth when tested with the cares; lures of this life.
As members of the kingdom of light we now become special targets of the spiritual powers operating in the kingdom of darkness. The apostle Peter wrote:
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world. (1Pe 5:8-9)
Peter in anticipation of his Messiah's warning of "an end of days", while writing here at one last time to remind the followers of Yeshua to the Truth that he has acquired. Still looking for the last time he felt the need to lay it on their hearts, yet again. Peter was a dying man at this stage, yet, he had here the great need and responsibility, as Yeshua commanded him, to be the leader of the Church. He was after all transformed from the egoistic state to quite the opposite selfless state after witnessing Yeshua’s teachings as the Messiah. Abandonment of egoism, and child-like trust in Wisdom, permits a nondual state of living (nondual in the sense that earthly existence becomes divinized, purer).
This state is potentially one main meaning of what the New Testament calls the Kingdom of Heaven:
Therefore, I say unto you, take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your Body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the Body than raiment? Behold the fowls of the air: for they sow not, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they? (Matthew 34:25-26)
Peter, once imprisoned for preaching the Gospel and during the night, the prison doors were opened miraculously by an Angel.
“Then the high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with indignation, and laid their hand on the Apostles and put them in the common prison.”
This time it was not just Peter and John but others and possibly all the Apostles that were taken to the prison of the high priest. Here we witness a strange act. In the middle of the night, an “Angel” clad in a white robe not unlike the sacred garments of the Essenes, penetrated the secured underground dungeon beneath the house of Caiphas the high priest. He led the Apostles out of the prison with the command, “Go, stand in the temple and speak to the people all the words of this life.”
In stunned surprise, rather than in prison, the next day the Apostles were found teaching on the temple proper, when the officers that were sent to get the Apostles out of prison, stuttered in their dismay with the realization that the secured perimeters of the prison of Ananus and Caiphas had been penetrated and compromised. Even the security of the inner sanctum of the palatial guarded residence of Ananus the Elder had apparently been breached.
Yes, Peter and his fellow prisoners went straight back to the temple. That same temple where, during the last Sabbath, it was preached that you may worship Yahweh and Him alone. Peter now preached a new way of thinking. As the authorities learned that they deliberately escaped prison, they rushed to the same Temple to recapture them. Peter then answered the questions from the authorities with very strong conviction;
“We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name,” he said. “Yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us responsible for this man’s Blood.” But Peter and the other Apostles replied, “We must obey Yahweh rather than men. Yahweh of our fathers raised up Yeshua, whom you had killed by hanging Him on a tree.” Acts 5:28-30
We see that Peter and the Apostles possessed the Kingdom vision and immediately started to implement the Kingdom vision in practical ways in terms of community, finances, Church structure, education, culture etc. showing other Christians around the world the way forward. This never envisioned a local congregation but the general consciousness of a population in the form of a universal Christian Church.
* We should not call any man impure or unclean-not call anything impure that God has made clean.
* God does not show favoritism but accepts men from every nation who fear him and do what is right.
* Give a message from God to the people of Israel:
* Telling people of the good news of peace through Yeshua Christ, who is Lord of all.
* Preach how God anointed Yeshua of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and power
* Heal all who were under the power of the Devil, because God was with him.
* God raised Yeshua from the dead on the third day and caused him to be seen.
* Act as witnesses whom God had already chosen
* He commanded us to preach to the people
* Testify that he is the one whom God appointed as Judge of the living and the dead.
* Testify that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.
* The gift of the Holy Spirit can be poured out even on the Gentiles.
* Baptize people in the name of Yeshua Christ
* We must obey Yahweh rather than men.