Original Douay Rheims Bible (1582 & 1610)

The Actes of the Apostles

Ananias and his wife Saphira, for their sacriledge, at Peters word fal downe dead, to the great terrour of the rest. 12. By the Apostles miracles, not only the number, but also their faith so increaseth, that they seeke in the streetes to the very shadow of Peter, the townes also about bringing their diseased to Hierusalem. 17. The Rulers againe oppose themselues, but in vaine. 19. For out of prison an Angel deliuereth them, bidding them preach openly to al: 27. & in their Councel Peter is nothing afraid of their bigge wordes: 34. Yea Gamaliel being one of themselues casteth a doubt among them, lest the matter be of God, and therfore impossible to be dissolued. 40. Finally, the Apostles being scourged by them, count it an honour, & cease no day from preaching.
1. BVT a certaine man named Ananias, with Saphira his wife sold a peece of land,
2. and Defrauded.
In that (*saith S. Augustine) he withdrew any part of that which he promised, he was guilty at once, both of sacrilege, and of fraud: of sacrilege, because he robbed God of that which was his by promise: of fraud, in that he withheld of the whole guift, a peece. Let now the Heretikes come, and say it was for lying or hypocrisie only that this fact was condemned, because they be loth to haue sacrilege counted any such sinne, who haue taught men not only to take away from God some peece of that, or al that themselues gaue, but plainly to spoile & applie to themselues al that other men gaue.
*Aug. ser. 9. in append. de diuersis tom. 10.
defrauded of the price of the land, his wife being priuie thereto: and bringing a certaine portion, laid it at the feet of the Apostles.
3. And Peter said.
Excommunication ioyned with corporal paines.
S. Peter (as you see here) without mans relation knew this fraud and the cogitations of Ananias, and as head of the Colledge and of the whole Church against which this robbery was committed, executed this heauy sentence of Excommunication both against him, & his wife consenting to the Sacrilege. For it was excommunication by S. Augustines iudgement, (li. 3. cont. ep. Parm. c. 1. to. 7.) and had this corporal miraculous death ioyned withal, as the Excommunication that *S. Paul gaue out against the incestuous and others, had the corporal vexation of Satan incident vnto it.
*1. Corinth. 5.
Peter said: Ananias, why hath Satan tempted thy hart, that thou shouldest lie to the Holy Ghost, and defraud of the price of the land?
4. Remaining, did it not remaine to thee: and being self, was it not In thy power.
Vow of Chastitie, and the breach thereof.
If it displeased God (saith S. Augustine.) to withdraw of the money which they had vowed to God, how is he angry when chastitie is vowed and is not performed: for to such may be said that which S. Peter said of the money: Thy virginitie remaining did it not remaine to thee, and before thou didst vow, was it not in thine owne power? for, whosoeuer haue vowed such things and haue not paied them, let them not thinke to be condemned to corporal deaths, but to euerlasting fire. August. Ser. 10. de diuersis. And S. Gregorie to the same purpose writeth thus: Ananias had vowed money to God, which afterward ouercome with deuilish persuasion he withdrew: but with what death he was punished, thou knowest. If then he were worthy of that death, who tooke away the money that he had giuen to God, consider what great peril in Gods iudgement thou shalt be worthy of, which hast withdrawn, not money, but thy self from almighty God, to whom thou hadst vowed thy self vnder the habite or weede of a Monke.
*Greg. li. 1. ep. 33.
in thy power? Why hast thou put this thing in thy hart? Thou hast Not to men, but.
To take from the Church or from the Gouernours therof, things dedicated to their vse and the seruice of God, or to lie vnto Gods Ministers, is so iudged of before God, as if the lie were made, and the fraud done to the Holy Ghost himself, who is the Churches President and Protectour.
not lied to men, but to God.
5. And Ananias hearing these wordes, fel downe, and gaue vp the ghost. And there came great feare vpon al that heard it.
6. And yong men rising vp, remoued him, & bearing him forth buried him.
7. And it was the space as it were of three houres, and his wife, not knowing what was chanced, came in.
8. And Peter answered her: Tel me woman, whether did you sel the land for so much? But she said: Yea, for so much.
9. And Peter vnto her: Why haue you agreed together to tempt the Spirit of our Lord? Behold, their feete that haue buried thy husband, at the doore, and they shal beare thee forth.
10. Forthwith she fel before his feete, and gaue vp the ghost. And the yong men going in, found her dead: and caried her forth, & buried her by her husband.
11. And there fel great Hereupon rose great reuerence, awe, & feare of the vulgar Christians toward the holy Apostles; for an example to al Christian people how to behaue themselues toward their Bishops and Priests. feare in the whole Church, and vpon al that heard these things.
12. The Epistle vpon Imbre wenesday in whitsunweeke. And within the octaue, & in a votiue of SS. Peter and Paul. And by the handes of the Apostles were many signes and wonders done among the people. And they al with one accord in Salomons porch.
13. But of the rest none durst ioyne themselues vnto them: but the people magnified them.
14. And the multitude of men and women that beleeued in our Lord, was more increased:
15. so that they did bring forth the sick into the streetes, & laid them in beddes and couches, that when Peter came, Peters shadow. his shadow His shadow.
Peters shadow & intercession.
Specially they sought to Peter the cheefe of al, who not only by touching, as the other, but by his very shadow cured al diseases. Whereupon S. Augustine saith: If then the shadow of his body could help, how much more now the fulnes of power? And if then a certaine litle wind of him passing by did profit them that humbly asked, how much more the grace of him now being permanent & remaining? Ser. 39. de Sanctis, speaking of the miracles done by the Saints now reigning in Heauen.
at the least might ouershadow any of them, and they al might be deliuered from their infirmities.
16. And there ranne together vnto Hierusalem the multitude also of the cities adioyning, bringing sicke persons and such vs were vexed of vncleane Spirits; who were al cured.
17. And the high Priest rising vp, and al that were with him, which is the heresie of the Sadducees, were replenished with zeale:
18. laid hands vpon the Apostles, and put them in the common prison.
19. An Angel leadeth them out of prison. But an Angel of our Lord by night opening the gates of the prison, & leading them forth, said:
20. Goe; and standing speake in the Temple to the people al the wordes of this life.
21. Who hauing heard this, early in the morning entred into the Temple, and taught. And the high Priest comming, and they that were with him, called together the Councel & al the Ancients of the children of Israël: and they sent to the prison that they might be brought.
22. But when the ministers were come, and opening the prison, found them not; returning they told, saying:
23. The prison truly we found shut with al diligence, and the keepers standing before the gates: but opening it, we found no man within.
24. And as soone as the Magistrates of the Temple and the cheefe Priests heard these wordes, they were in doubt of them, what would befal.
25. And there came a certaine man and told them: That the men, loe, which you did put in prison, are in the Temple standing, and teaching the people.
26. Then went the Magistrate with the ministers, & brought them without force, for they feared the people, lest they should be stoned.
27. And when they had brought them, they set them in the Councel. And the high Priest asked them,
28. saying: Act. 4,28. Commanding we commanded you that you should not teach in this name: and behold you haue filled Hierusalem with your doctrine, and you wil bring vpon vs the bloud of this man.
29. But Peter answering and the Apostles, said: God must be obeied, rather then men.
30. The God of our Fathers hath raised vp Iesvs, whom you did kil, hanging him vpon a tree.
31. This Prince and Saviour God hath exalted with his right hand, to giue repentance to Israël, and remission of sinnes.
32. And we are witnesses of these wordes, and the holy Ghost, whom God hath giuen to al that obey him.
33. When they had heard these things, it cut them to the hart, and they consulted to kil them.
34. But one in the Councel rising vp, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a Doctour of law honourable to al the people, commanded the men to be put forth a while.
35. and he said to them: Ye men of Israël, take heed to your selues touching these men what you meane to doe.
36. For before these daies there rose Theudas. Theodas, saying he was some body, to whom consented a number of men about foure hundred, who was slaine: and al that beleeued him, were dispersed, and brought to nothing.
37. After this fellow there rose Iudas of Galilee in the daies of the Enrolling, and drew away the people after him, and he perished: and as many as euer consented to him, were dispersed.
38. And now therfore I say to you, depart from these men and let them alone: for if this counsel or worke be of men, it wil be dissolued:
39. but if it be of Time, & the euident successe of Christes Church & religion, proue it to be of God: no violence of the Iewes, no persecution of the Heathen Princes, no endeauour of domestical Aduersaries, Heretikes, Schismatikes, or il liuers, preuailing against it; as on the other side, many attempts haue been made by Arius, Macedonius, Nestorius, Luther, and the like, who thought themselues some body: but after they had plaied their partes awhile, their memory is buried, or liueth only in malediction & infamie, and their scholars come to naught. Therfore let no Cath. man be scandalized that this heresie holdeth vp for a time. For the Arians & some others flourished much longer than these, & were better supported by Princes and learning, and yet had an end. God, you are not able to dissolue 'it.' them, lest perhaps you be found to resist God also. And they consented to him.
40. And calling in the Apostles, after they had scourged them, they charged them that they should not speake in the name of Iesvs, and dimissed them.
41. And they went from the sight of the Councel reioycing, because they were accounted worthy to suffer reproch for the name of Iesvs.
42. And euery day they ceased not in the Temple, and from house to house to teach and euangelize Christ Iesvs.