Trace the circumstances that led to the death of Ananias and Sapphira

The believers’ communal
living was such that the Christians shared their possessions in common. Ananias
and Sapphira sold their own piece of land, but brought only a part of the money
to the Church. This was strictly against the spirit of communal life of the
Christians. Peter asked Ananias why satan had led him to lie to the Holy
Spirit, telling him that the land and the proceeds were theirs and they were
free to handle them the way they wished. But by declaring publicly that they
were handing over the entire proceeds, they had not lied to man but to God. When
Ananias heard these words of rebuke from Peter, he fell down and died. Young
men later carried away his body for burial. His wife/ Sapphira came in, unaware
of what had happened to her husband. Peter asked her whether they had sold the
land for the amount surrendered, she affirmed it. Peter asked her why she
conspired with her husband to tempt the spirit of God telling her to listen to
the approaching footsteps of those who had gone to bury her husband.
Immediately she heard this, she fell down and died. Her body was carried-away
by the same young men who had earlier carried her husband for burial. Great
fear came upon the Church and upon all who heard the news.

Lessons: Ananias
and Sapphira were misguided into thinking that they could serve both God and
Mammon at the same time. One can deceive a fellow man, but cannot deceive God
who reads the heart of man. The Church was established by God and controlled by
the Holy Spirit. Members must work in accordance with guidelines set up by the
Holy Spirit. God punishes sin of disobedience and His judgment is certain. We
should give with sincerity / honesty.

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