Verse of the Day Devotion: Acts 12:12 And when he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying.
Peter had been arrested by Herod Agrippa 1 in Jerusalem. James, the brother of John had recently been killed by Agrippa and because he saw how the Jews applauded this action, he decided to arrest Peter and do the same. However, because they were entering the time of Passover he kept him in prison, planning to kill him after Passover was completed.
Then, on the night that Herod was going to bring Peter out to kill Him, God intervenes on his behalf and rescues him. And he does it in a supernatural way. “On the very night when Herod was about to bring him forward, Peter was sleeping between two soldiers, bound with two chains, and guards in front of the door were watching over the prison. And behold, an angel of the Lord suddenly appeared and a light shone in the cell; and he struck Peter’s side and woke him up, saying, “Get up quickly.” And his chains fell off his hands. And the angel said to him, “Gird yourself and put on your sandals.” And he did so. And he *said to him, “Wrap your cloak around you and follow me. And he went out and continued to follow, and he did not know that what was being done by the angel was real, but thought he was seeing a vision. When they had passed the first and second guard, they came to the iron gate that leads into the city, which opened for them by itself; and they went out and went along one street, and immediately the angel departed from him. When Peter came to himself, he said, “Now I know for sure that the Lord has sent forth His angel and rescued me from the hand of Herod and from all that the Jewish people were expecting.” Acts 12:6-11.
This is an incredible outcome of Peter’s arrest. He was in prison with four guards at all time watching him, two on either side of him, two others outside the door. Apparently, he did not expect this because when he was walking out, he questioned the reality of this situation. He was free and no one was following him, attempting to bring him back. However, note our focus verse. “And when he realized this, he went to the house of Mary, the mother of John who was also called Mark, where many were gathered together and were praying.” Acts 12:12. In the last part of this verse we read, ‘where many were gathered together and were praying.’
This is an important fact in the whole story. The Christians were in Mary’s house praying to God asking for His intervention, no doubt regarding Peter’s release. They believed this could be the end of Peter’s ministry. They thought Peter was destined to die just as James had because they we unable to rescue him. However, just as Jesus told the disciples regarding the incident of the rich you ruler, “And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26.
As Christians, one of the things we need to do on a regular basis is pray for each other. We may not be arrested awaiting execution because of our Christian beliefs as Peter was, but we all are going through difficulties we want God to intervene in. It may be family quarrels, needs we need met, or simply peace during hard times. We may not have an answer, however God does and He can bring us through any situation that come our way. Paul said in his letter to the Church at Rome that we are to be devoted in prayer (Romans 12:12). This should be our heart, whether we are alone or with a group of brothers and sisters, we need to be in prayer for each other. Again, we may not know there is a need, however, we all need God to help us. So, take time each day to lift each other up in prayer. We may be amazed at what He will do for us and our fellow Christians.
William Funkhouser MDiv, ThD, Founder and President of True Devotion Ministries.
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