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SPIRITUAL CAPTIVITY

March 18, 2014

Tuesday

Acts 8:23

“For I see that you are in the gall of bitterness and in the bondage of iniquity.”

 

EXAMPLE

A rattlesnake, if cornered, will sometimes become so angry it will bite itself. That is exactly what the harboring of hate and resentment against others is–a biting of oneself. We think that we are harming others in holding these spites and hates, but the deeper harm is to ourselves.

E. Stanley Jones

 

LESSON

Peter flatly rejects Simon’s offer. He says that Simon has “no part or share in this ministry, because your heart is not right before God”. Peter gives Simon a scathing rebuke about his spiritual blindness. While this is a strong curse, Peter also urges Simon to repent and seek forgiveness because he is “full of bitterness and captive to sin”. But Simon doesn’t understand, and has his mind only on physical consequences.

Bitterness is associated with idolatry. I think it is safe to assume that the bitterness Peter is speaking of, therefore, is sin. Simon doesn’t appear to be a “bitter” man as we see bitterness, but rather one motivated by pride and greed. Peter confirms this by saying Simon is captive to sin. Are you bitter today?

 

Memory Verse: Luke 4:18

 

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