Limited and Liberated

Read:

“ . . . Peter was kept in the prison . . .” Acts 12:5

Reflect:

God is going to be faithful to you. God will display His power and expose His glory. When focusing on God’s promise and power, we lose sight of the fact there is no deliverance without difficulty. It’s only in places of struggle we experience success. It’s in times you feel trapped, powerless, and hopeless that God shines the brightest.

The religious leaders had crucified Jesus. They had executed Stephen and enacted severe measures against the Christian community. Sometime later King Herod Agrippa became frustrated at the success of the Church. The king struck once again at the leaders of the Church, killing James, the brother of John. 

Now Peter was arrested and thrown into prison, cast into the deepest recesses of Herod’s prison. Down the long corridor you can hear door after door shut behind him with a re-echoing clang. Then to ensure he would not escape, Peter was chained to two soldiers. Things looked bleak, there was not much chance that Peter would get out of prison alive. 

There were some truths that Herod had yet to learn. One was that God works. Stone walls and iron bars are no match for the power of God. Herod missed the fact that you can shut out all physical help, but no authority can shut out the work of heaven. 

Herod thought he had won, he’d finally halted the spread of Christianity.  But there, in the darkened cell, the light of heaven broke forth and angel appeared and the chains fell off of Peter. The angel led him out through cell door after cell door, up out of the confines and constraints. Finally, the giant iron gate which divided the limited and the liberated, at once swung back on its hinges. And Peter was out under the stars again. 

No great effort can thwart the will of God. Neither will the message of Jesus ever be stopped. Wherever the gospel is preached, extraordinary things take place. We have the promise of Jesus who said, “With people it’s impossible, but not with God, for all things are possible with God.”

Respond:

Today, believe God for the impossible.