Today we are looking at conflicts between those in power, and those who genuinely believe in God.
The mixing of Politics and Religion has made a bad name for religion. But the truth is, those who use religion to gain power don’t really fear God!
1The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. 2They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. 3They seized Peter and John, and because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. 4But many who heard the message believed, and the number of men grew to about five thousand. Acts 4:1-4
In Find Out The Answer of an Answered-Prayer!, I mentioned a few verses in Chapter 3 from the book of Act that tell the story of how Peter and John miraculously healed a crippled beggar in the name of Jesus Christ.
After that, Peter went on and gave a great speech on Jesus’ resurrection, that how bad it was for the people to nail him on the cross, and the whole nine yards.
In those days, the land of Jerusalem was ruled by religious authorities from their own people under the umbrella of the Romans Empire, so as long as the people there paid the Romans taxes and didn’t do things that threaten the Roman’s rules, they were relatively autonomous.
The religious authorities at the time were worried about the Christian Gospel. Months ago, they just nailed Jesus on the cross, and they thought their main competition had gone, forever.
They knew fully well that Jesus did perform miracles, that Jesus’ body had gone after an earthquake happened at his tomb, and that an angel showed up before the guards that were guarding the tomb.
But they bribed the guards into silence! Even though the guards told them what happened, all they were worrying about was losing their power over the people.
God allowed them to live on, and had given them chances to repent. This time, the apostles were doing similar things that Jesus did, but here is the reaction of the authorities:
12The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people…13No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people. 14Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number. 15As a result, people brought the sick into the streets and laid them on beds and mats so that at least Peter’s shadow might fall on some of them as he passed by. 16Crowds gathered also from the towns around Jerusalem, bringing their sick and those tormented by evil[a] spirits, and all of them were healed.
17Then the high priest and all his associates, who were members of the party of the Sadducees, were filled with jealousy. 18They arrested the apostles and put them in the public jail. Acts 5:12-17
How weird! If it was me, I would have worried what God would do to me after I die. But the authorities didn’t seem to care. Power was the only thing they worshiped.
After a few more centuries of persecution, Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire, so you might think the good time had come. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, the power mongers saw opportunities there, so they infiltrated the ranks and quickly put on their new masks.
Whenever genuine faith became popular, and that no one is persecuting it, power mongers will infiltrate and dress like the sheep.
Since AD 313 when Christianity became the “official religion”, shameless wolves under sheep’s skins started to call themselves “successor of saint Peter”.
They consolidated all the religious power in the western world, taking bibles away from the people, claiming that the special ministers they appointed would interpret the Bible for them because the Bible was too easy to be misinterpreted without professional guidance.
Misinterpret? Or were they worried that if people knew the Bible they would get exposed?
Then they introduced some grand wars which they called “Crusades”. The thieves and robbers that joined the C-wars must had made some good money from the plunders.
And there was this purgatory. Funny I never knew there was a sub-hell beside the official one that was mentioned in the Bible. You could buy some coupons that would reduce your days in purgatory!
Then they burned some genuine believers on sticks.
Even to this day, the wolves are still trying to impose central planning on all religions. According to the Bible, they will succeed in the End Time. If you don’t want to be brainwashed by this central religion thing and escape the prosecution that will come in the End Time, then it’s probably a wise choice to pick up the Bible and start being serious with Jesus Christ!