Hypocrisy is pretending to be something while you are actually something else. The people Jesus spoke the most against were hypocrites. They appeared very religious and were proud about keeping rules and rituals, but forgot about the important things in God’s law like justice and mercy.
- Satan – the chief evil spirit that opposes God; the devil
- What was the life of the new believers like? How did they treat one another?
- Why do you think new believers shared what they had with one another?
- What did Joseph do? Given his nickname, what do you think he was like?
- What did Ananias and Sapphira do that was like Barnabas? What did they do differently?
- What is Ananias’ sin? Was he required to give all (or any) of his money to the group?
- Why do you think he held back part of the money? Why do you think he lied?
- What happens to Ananias after Peter talks to him about his sin?
- How did Peter test Sapphira when she came in? What do you think he wanted to find out?
- Peter said their lies had tested God’s Spirit. What do you think that meant?
- The immediate punishment was a sign from God to the believers. How did everyone feel? How would you have felt? What would you have learned?
How important do you think it is for a follower of Jesus to be honest and truthful? How should followers of Jesus react to temptation of impressing others with false words and actions? This was the first recorded time that new believers tried to lie to God. Christians know from personal experience that this was not the last time, but immediate death isn’t the usual response. However, the Bible shows those who only pretend to believe in Jesus are still separated from God.