The Generosity Of The Early Chri
All of the believers were as one in heart and mind; and not one of them
called what he had his own, but they all shared with one another. No one
among them was in want, for those who owned lands or houses sold them
and brought the money that came from the sale to the apostles. The money
was then given to whoever needed it. Joseph, whom the apostles called
Barnabas, sold his farm and brought the money to the apostles.
But a man named Ananias and his wife Sapphira sold some property, and
with her approval kept back part of the price and brought only a part of
it to the apostles. "Ananias," said Peter, "why has Satan put into your
heart the desire to deceive the Holy Spirit and keep back part of the
price of the land? While the land remained unsold, was it not your own?
Even after it was sold, was not the money yours to do with as you
pleased? How could you plan a thing like this? You have lied not to man
but to God." When Ananias heard these words, he fell down and died; and
great fear seized all who heard of it. The younger men arose, wrapped up
the body, and carried it away to be buried.
About three hours later his wife came in, knowing nothing of what had
taken place. Peter said to her, "Tell me, did you sell the land for so
much?" And she answered, "Yes, for so much." Peter said to her, "How is
it that you two agreed together to test the Spirit of the Lord? The men
who have buried your husband are here at the door and they shall carry
you out." Instantly she fell dead at his feet; so when the young men
came in and found her dead, they carried her out and buried her beside
Then great fear came upon the whole church and upon all who heard of
these things. Many miracles and wonders were done among the people by
the apostles. Even from the towns about Jerusalem crowds gathered,
bringing sick people, and all were healed.