Hola Divas! Welcome to week six of our Bad Girls of the Bible Study by Liz Curtis Higgs. Just in case you are joining us for the first time, please read about the “Dance Fit Divas Bad Girls of the Bible Study“. You should also read past posts on each bad girl: “EVE“, Potiphar’s Wife, Lot’s Wife , Woman at the Well and Delilah.
Our bad girl for this week, Sapphira was a another material girl. She loved money to death….literally. When I read Sapphira and her husband Ananias’ story, I could hear the OJays singing “For the Love of Money” in the background.
The smooth lyrics to the song begin with the OJay’s crooning…money-money-money..MONEY. Their soulful tune was the theme song for Donald Trump’s apprentice.
“Some people got to have it Some people really need it……..do things, do things, do bad, bad things with it…Almighty Dollar”.
Our dear Sapphira’s story can be found in Acts 5:1-11. However, before her story begins, Acts 4:36-37 tells the story of a man called Barnabas who sold a field and gave the money to the apostles so that it could be used for believers who were in need. In the first century, Christians cheerfully shared their resources so that no one would be without. (WOW!)
With such a generous gesture, Barnabas probably received quite a bit of attention, praise and gratitude from the other believers. One commentary reported that his name was actually “Joseph”, but the apostles called him “Barnabas” which means “Son of Encouragement”.
Attention, praise, gratitude, their names on a brass plate on the church pew, or a facility named after them? Oh yeah! Ananias and Sapphira wanted some accolades of their own. So, they “also sold a piece of property” (Acts 5:1) and put their profits “at the apostles’ feet” (Acts 5:2). Only, Ananias secretly pocketed some of the proceeds “with his wife’s full knowledge” (Acts 5:2).
Do you hear the OJay’s now? “Call it lean, mean, mean green….” (I’m singing here)
Peter confronted Ananias. He scolded him and told him that he was not lying to men but to God. Ananias fell out and died..right on the spot.
Three hours later, Peter confronted Sapphira. He asked her about the price of the property and she lied.
Just like her husband, our dear bad girl dropped dead on the spot.
We can glean quite a few lessons from Sapphira:
1. We will be judged as individuals.
Peter confronted Ananias and Sapphria as individuals, not as a couple. It is futile to play the blame game and place all of the responsibility of our spiritual growth and discernment on our spouse (or anyone else for that matter).
2. Honesty truly is the best policy
I tell my daughters all the time: “If you do something wrong, just tell the truth. Yes, there will be consequences but lying ALWAYS makes it worse”. Divas we need to own our mess!
Can’t you just see Ananais and Sapphira rationalizing how their lie was ok to tell?
“Look how much we are giving…It’s our business how much we really made off the property…It is our property after all…People need to mind their own business…..We have needs too…”
What are some practical ways you can put your big girl panties on and own up to the truth?