While reading the Book of Acts yesterday, I spotted something you’ve probably seen before, but it jumped off the page for me.
Here’s the quote from Acts 22:12-15:
12 “A certain Ananias, a man who was devout by the standard of the Law, and well spoken of by all the Jews who lived there, 13 came to me, and standing near said to me, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight!’ And at that very time I looked up at him. 14 And he said, ‘The God of our fathers has appointed you to know His will and to see the Righteous One and to hear an utterance from His mouth. 15 For you will be a witness for Him to all men of what you have seen and heard.
I’ve had a running conversation (defense of ‘walking orderly according to the Law’) on another blog. Their presupposition is that the ‘law is done away with’ and ‘following the Law is the path of curses,’ contrary to myriad Scriptures… So, it was fun whenI spotted this little nugget while digging into Rabbi Shaul’s actions, yet again.
The text clearly indicates that Ananias is a servant of the Righteous One, Yeshua. And, it clearly indicates that he is a ‘devout man’ with the standard being the Law. Confirmation that ‘walking Torah’ and following Messiah are NOT mutually exclusive. In fact, the Revelation of John tells us over and over that the saints who overcome have BOTH the ‘testimony of Yeshua’ AND ‘keep the commandments of Yahweh.’ See Rev. 12:17, 14:12; 15:3; 20:4!
There may be more here, too!!
The phrase ‘well spoken of by the Jews who lived there…’ MAY hint to Ananias being a proselyte. MAY. A similar phrase is used of Cornelius. Acts 10:2 calls him a ‘devout’ man and in 10:22 he is referred to a being respected by all the Jews. Interesting!
Granted, Ananias, is a Hebrew name, or at least a derivative of ‘Chananayah,’ meaning ‘Yahweh has graciously given.’
Knowing a little of Yahweh’s sense of humor, would it not have been poetic justice for Rav Shaul to receive his sight not only from one who believed in Yeshua and kept the Law, but further, might have been one of the Diaspora who was a proselyte seeking to ‘get back in?’ The irony is delicious.
Surely, what we KNOW is that the devotion of the one who Yahweh used to give sight to Rav Shaul was measured ‘by the standard of the Law.’ And, that MEANS something.
What was Yeshua’s standard of righteousness? Torah. Deuteronomy 13.
What is your standard of righteousness?