And behold, an angel of the Lord stood next to him, and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him, saying, “Get up quickly.” And the chains fell off his hands. – Acts 12:7 ESV
This is an example of divine deliverance. This is an important message for each and every one of us, because whe there we are in a season of discovery, trial, growth, or victory – there is deliverance that needs to take place in us or through us.
Let’s examine this situation a but closer, a but more intimately. Let’s draw close to the Word of God…
Peter was in jail, facing death at the hands of Herod. And it wasn’t until the very night that Herod was going to bring him out that the LORD intervened. How embarrassing this must have been for the enemies of The Way, for Herod himself, for this to happen in such a visible way that would be hard to cover up and spin for their own purposes. Sometimes God’s timing make not make sense to us as we are Peter sitting in our own personal jail. Sometimes God’s purposes don’t make sense when we are the believers praying together in hiding from our oppressors and it seems that any knock on the door might be an enemy come to kill us or deceive us. But how amazingly and divinely perfect His timing is when we can see it from a clear place of perspective and discernment outside the confining walls of our own circumstances.
Many times it is easy for us to look into the situations and circumstances of others with a clarity of understanding that we might find is cloudy when examining ourselves – because we allow the familiar too much leeway in influencing our examination instead of relying completely upon who we are told that we are in Christ. We forget to trust fully in the LORD and walk by faith not by sight.
What walls have you allowed the enemy to build up around your mind? Around your heart?
Or what walls might you have put up yourself out of fear of what others might think if that thought, that act, that sin, that idol was brought out into the light?
But don’t we see how the messenger of God delivered Peter?
1) an angel of the Lord stood next to him
2) a light shone in the cell
3) He struck Peter on the side and woke him
4) He said, “Get up quickly.”
5) And the chains fell off his hands.
This is the story in human terms and perspective, but what does this allude to spiritually?
1) a standing messenger
2) a revealing light/truth shone forth
3) a blow of correction/stirring woke the sleeping soul
4) The Word of God sent forth commanded, “Arise”
There are two parties here, the one bringing the message (that delivers) in power – and the one in need of deliverance.
This is true of every one of us. If we believe ourselves to be standing in power and victory, isn’t it so that we can set the captives free, isn’t it so that we can go forth and share this powerful Word of God that sets men free from their bondage?
Or if we believe ourselves to be imprisoned by our circumstances, are we eagerly awaiting the messenger to show up, for His light to shine forth, for the touch to come, for the trumpet to shout, “Arise”? Or are we barely still clinging to hope, even to that last moment when it seems that it might be too late for anything other than God himself to rescue you?
Those moments when all other doors have been shut, when nothing in the way of the world or the power of mere man could possibly rescue us, they are an amazing opportunity for God to be revealed in our lives and do the miraculous so that He gets all the praise and honor and glory – as it should be in all things anyways, right?
Too many of us sit grumbling about our circumstances and situations to Good and to each other instead of resting on the peace knowing that He is on His way to deliver us EVEN FROM THIS TRIAL!
He is the one that is faithful and true. He delivers. And when He does, it is so that we who were resting can receive the touch, can stand upright, and go to proclaim deliverance. Disciples making disciples. The power of the Holy Spirit of God going forth through His messengers to set the captives free.
Are you walking in power and victory? Then whose life do you need to shine light into? Who needs a touch? Who needs life spoken into them?
If you don’t know who, if you don’t have a call, a purpose, and a direction that the LORD is sending you out to make disciples of the nations – maybe it is YOU who needs the deliverance? Maybe you have allowed complacency, distraction, worldliness, sin, doubt, shame, guilt, unforgiveness, or bitterness to plant a seed in your life that has grown up into weeds that are trying to choke out your faith, your walk, your purpose, your calling. Well, I have Good News for you, friend.
It is not too late.
You have not strayed so far away that you can’t turn back.
That darkness had no power over you, Child of God!
Do you believe? Have you confessed Jesus Christ as your LORD and Savior? Have you come to realize the high price paid for you at the cross, the high gift confirmed for you by His resurrection, the free gift of God that is yours?
Get up! Quickly!
Your sins are forgiven!
Your chains are no more. Walk in freedom, for he who Christ sets free is FREE INDEED!
THE ENEMY IS A LIAR! HE HAS NO HOLD ON YOU! STAND UPRIGHT, WALK STRAIGHT FORWARD, WITH YOUR EYES SET UPON THE PRIZE!
Go and tell the nations!