• William T. Howe Ph.D.

November 17, 2021

Daily Reading: Acts 11-13

Acts 12:15

And they said unto her, Thou art mad. But she constantly affirmed that it was even so. Then said they, It is his angel.

“Christians pray for rain then fail to carry an umbrella.” No one can say with any authority who said this phrase first, but many preachers have used it as an illustration of unbelief in answered prayers. In Acts chapter 12 there is a wonderful, true life, Scriptural story proving that many people pray for great things not really believing them possible, even in the midst of the prayer being answered.

Peter is imprisoned for preaching the Gospel of Christ. Herod killed James the brother of John and decided to take Peter also, evidently to carry out the same dastardly deed. To make sure that Peter could not escape, Herod posted four quaternions of soldiers to keep him. That is 16 hardened, well trained, and capable men charged with keeping one man in a locked jail cell.

Those who loved and cared for Peter in the church began to pray. They prayed without ceasing in Mary’s house (the mother of John Mark). Sometime in the night, while sleeping between two soldiers, bound in chains, and behind locked doors Peter was secure. That is until the Lord God decided to answer the prayers of the saints. An angel was dispatched with instructions to rescue Peter from his upcoming execution. The angel of the Lord came to the Apostle, hit him on the side, rousted him out of his sleep and told him to stand up. Upon doing all this, the chains fell from Peter’s hands, he girded himself, put on his sandals, put on his garment all at the command of the angel and then followed this celestial being. Peter couldn’t really believe it, even to the point of seeing the outer iron gate open on its own power. No electricity then, this was something else to see, no doubt.

Upon reaching the street the angel left Peter. He came to himself (as any would have to after experiencing such a thing) and decided to go to Mary’s house. He knocked on the door, a woman named Rhoda answered, and upon seeing Peter closed the door in surprise, then commenced to announce to all those praying that Peter was at the door. He was there, continuing to knock, while they were inside not believing that their prayers were answered. They told her she was mad, crazy, but she continued to affirm that Peter was there. Answer the door! They did, Peter was there, bigger than life. Prayer answered.

So, the next time you pray for rain, carry an umbrella!

Until tomorrow, live for Christ today.

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