Peter and John before the Council
4 1 As they spoke to the people, the priests and the captain of the temple and the Sadducees came to them, 2 being upset because they taught the people and proclaimed in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. 3 They laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was now evening. 4 But many of those who heard the word believed, and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.
5 It happened in the morning, that their rulers, elders, and scribes were gathered together in Jerusalem. 6 Annas the high priest was there, with Caiaphas, John, Alexander, and as many as were relatives of the high priest. 7 When they had stood them in the middle of them, they inquired, “By what power, or in what name, have you done this?” 8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “You rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, 9 if we are examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, 10 be it known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, in him does this man stand here before you whole. 11 He is ‘the stone which was regarded as worthless by you, the builders, which has become the head of the corner.’  12 There is salvation in none other, for neither is there any other name under heaven, that is given among men, by which we must be saved!” 13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and had perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marveled. They recognized that they had been with Jesus. 14 Seeing the man who was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.
15 But when they had commanded them to go aside out of the council, they conferred among themselves, 16 saying, “What shall we do to these men? Because indeed a notable miracle has been done through them, as can be plainly seen by all who dwell in Jerusalem, and we can’t deny it. 17 But so that this spreads no further among the people, let’s threaten them, that from now on they don’t speak to anyone in this name.” 18 They called them, and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you rather than to God, judge for yourselves, 20 for we can’t help telling the things which we saw and heard.” 21 When they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way to punish them, because of the people; for everyone glorified God for that which was done. 22 For the man on whom this miracle of healing was performed was more than forty years old.
The Believers Pray for Boldness
23 Being let go, they came to their own company, and reported all that the chief priests and the elders had said to them. 24 When they heard it, they lifted up their voice to God with one accord, and said, “O Lord, you are God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all that is in them; 25 who by the mouth of your servant, David, said,
‘Why do the nations rage,
and the peoples plot a vain thing? 26 The kings of the earth take a stand,
and the rulers take council together,
against the Lord, and against his Christ .’  27 “For truly, in this city against your holy servant, Jesus, whom you anointed, both Herod and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles and the people of Israel, were gathered together 28 to do whatever your hand and your council foreordained to happen. 29 Now, Lord, look at their threats, and grant to your servants to speak your word with all boldness, 30 while you stretch out your hand to heal; and that signs and wonders may be done through the name of your holy Servant Jesus.” 31 When they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were gathered together. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit, and they spoke the word of God with boldness.
All Things in Common
32 The multitude of those who believed were of one heart and soul. Not one of them claimed that anything of the things which he possessed was his own, but they had all things in common. 33 With great power, the apostles gave their testimony of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. Great grace was on them all. 34 For neither was there among them any who lacked, for as many as were owners of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, 35 and laid them at the apostles’ feet, and distribution was made to each, according as anyone had need. 36 Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas (which is, being interpreted, Son of Encouragement), a Levite, a man of Cyprus by race, 37 having a field, sold it, and brought the money and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
Ananias and Sapphira
5 1 But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira, his wife, sold a possession, 2 and kept back part of the price, his wife also being aware of it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet. 3 But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit, and to keep back part of the price of the land? 4 While you kept it, didn’t it remain your own? After it was sold, wasn’t it in your power? How is it that you have conceived this thing in your heart? You haven’t lied to men, but to God.” 5 Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and died. Great fear came on all who heard these things. 6 The young men arose and wrapped him up, and they carried him out and buried him. 7 About three hours later, his wife, not knowing what had happened, came in. 8 Peter answered her, “Tell me whether you sold the land for so much.”
She said, “Yes, for so much.” 9 But Peter asked her, “How is it that you have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord? Behold, the feet of those who have buried your husband are at the door, and they will carry you out.” 10 She fell down immediately at his feet, and died. The young men came in and found her dead, and they carried her out and buried her by her husband. 11 Great fear came on the whole assembly, and on all who heard these things.
Many Signs and Wonders Performed
12 By the hands of the apostles many signs and wonders were done among the people. They were all with one accord in Solomon’s porch. 13 None of the rest dared to join them, however the people honored them. 14 More believers were added to the Lord, multitudes of both men and women. 15 They even carried out the sick into the streets, and laid them on cots and mattresses, so that as Peter came by, at the least his shadow might overshadow some of them. 16 Multitudes also came together from the cities around Jerusalem, bringing sick people, and those who were tormented by unclean spirits: and they were all healed.
The Apostles Persecuted
17 But the high priest rose up, and all those who were with him (which is the sect of the Sadducees), and they were filled with jealousy, 18 and laid hands on the apostles, and put them in public custody. 19 But an angel of the Lord opened the prison doors by night, and brought them out, and said, 20 “Go stand and speak in the temple to the people all the words of this life.” 21 When they heard this, they entered into the temple about daybreak, and taught. But the high priest came, and those who were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought. 22 But the officers who came didn’t find them in the prison. They returned and reported, 23 “We found the prison shut and locked, and the guards standing before the doors, but when we opened them, we found no one inside!” 24 Now when the high priest, the captain of the temple, and the chief priests heard these words, they were very perplexed about them and what might become of this. 25 One came and told them, “Behold, the men whom you put in prison are in the temple, standing and teaching the people.”
26 Then the captain went with the officers, and brought them without violence, for they were afraid that the people might stone them. 27 When they had brought them, they set them before the council. The high priest questioned them, 28 saying, “Didn’t we strictly command you not to teach in this name? Behold, you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching, and intend to bring this man’s blood on us.” 29 But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. 30 The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom you killed, hanging him on a tree. 31 God exalted him with his right hand to be a Prince and a Savior, to give repentance to Israel, and remission of sins. 32 We are His witnesses of these things; and so also is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him.” 33 But they, when they heard this, were cut to the heart, and determined to kill them. 34 But one stood up in the council, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law, honored by all the people, and commanded to put the apostles out for a little while. 35 He said to them, “You men of Israel, be careful concerning these men, what you are about to do. 36 For before these days Theudas rose up, making himself out to be somebody; to whom a number of men, about four hundred, joined themselves: who was slain; and all, as many as obeyed him, were dispersed, and came to nothing. 37 After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the enrollment, and drew away some people after him. He also perished, and all, as many as obeyed him, were scattered abroad. 38 Now I tell you, withdraw from these men, and leave them alone. For if this counsel or this work is of men, it will be overthrown. 39 But if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow it, and you would be found even to be fighting against God!” 40 They agreed with him. Summoning the apostles, they beat them and commanded them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. 41 They therefore departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for Jesus’ name. 42 Every day, in the temple and at home, they never stopped teaching and preaching Jesus, the Christ.
The Appointment of the Seven
6 1 Now in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplying, a complaint arose from the Hellenists  against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily service. 2 The twelve summoned the multitude of the disciples and said, “It is not appropriate for us to forsake the word of God and serve tables. 3 Therefore select from among you, brothers, seven men of good report, full of the Holy Spirit and of wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. 4 But we will continue steadfastly in prayer and in the ministry of the word.” 5 These words pleased the whole multitude. They chose Stephen, a man full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus, a proselyte of Antioch; 6 whom they set before the apostles. When they had prayed, they laid their hands on them. 7 The word of God increased and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem exceedingly. A great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.
The Arrest of Stephen
8 Stephen, full of faith and power, performed great wonders and signs among the people. 9 But some of those who were of the synagogue called “The Libertines,” and of the Cyrenians, of the Alexandrians, and of those of Cilicia and Asia arose, disputing with Stephen. 10 They weren’t able to withstand the wisdom and the Spirit by which he spoke. 11 Then they secretly induced men to say, “We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses and God.” 12 They stirred up the people, the elders, and the scribes, and came against him and seized him, and brought him in to the council, 13 and set up false witnesses who said, “This man never stops speaking blasphemous words against this holy place and the law. 14 For we have heard him say that this Jesus of Nazareth will destroy this place, and will change the customs which Moses delivered to us.” 15 All who sat in the council, fastening their eyes on him, saw his face like it was the face of an angel.
4:11 Psalm 118:22
4:26 Christ (Greek) and Messiah (Hebrew) both mean Anointed One.
4:26 Psalm 2:1-2
6:1 The Hellenists used Greek language and culture, even though they were also of Hebrew descent.