RBT: Philippians 1-4

Memory Verse: “So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him”. Acts 12:5,NIV

Bible Text: Acts 12: 1-10

12:1 It was about this time that King Herod arrested some who belonged to the church, intending to persecute them. 

12:2 He had James, the brother of John, put to death with the sword. 

12:3 When he saw that this met with approval among the Jews, he proceeded to seize Peter also. This happened during the Festival of Unleavened Bread. 

12:4 After arresting him, he put him in prison, handing him over to be guarded by four squads of four soldiers each. Herod intended to bring him out for public trial after the Passover. 

12:5 So Peter was kept in prison, but the church was earnestly praying to God for him. 

12:6 The night before Herod was to bring him to trial, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and sentries stood guard at the entrance. 

12:7 Suddenly an angel of the Lord appeared and a light shone in the cell. He struck Peter on the side and woke him up. “Quick, get up!” he said, and the chains fell off Peter’s wrists. 

12:8 Then the angel said to him, “Put on your clothes and sandals.” And Peter did so. “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me,” the angel told him. 

12:9 Peter followed him out of the prison, but he had no idea that what the angel was doing was really happening; he thought he was seeing a vision.

12:10 They passed the first and second guards and came to the iron gate leading to the city. It opened for them by itself, and they went through it. When they had walked the length of one street, suddenly the angel left him.

Max Lucado said, “Our prayers may be awkward. Our attempts may be feeble. But since the power of prayer is in the one who hears it and not in the one who says it, our prayers do make a difference.”

In today's passage, King Herod was trying to win popularity with the Jews, so he arrested James and executed him. Because Herod's action pleased the Jews, he went ahead to arrest Peter. The night Herod was to bring Peter to trial, the angel of the LORD appeared to Peter and there was light in the cell, He woke Peter up and asked him to follow him. It was when Peter got outside their own gate that he realised that what was happening was a physical occurrence and not a vision.

And all these happened to Peter because of the consistent, earnest and fervent prayers of believers in the house of Mary the mother of John Mark. If the church was not interceding for Peter, maybe he would have also ended up like James. As believers, we should not wait till the worst happens before we pray and intercede for others. The Bible tells us to pray without ceasing, we are to join other believers to earnestly pray. The fervent prayers of believers move God to do the unimaginable.

Insight: The prayers of believers move God to perform miracles.

Prayer: Father, please help me not to wait till things become worse before I pray. Help my prayer life.

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