I've read somewhere that Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5) did not lose their salvation but only lost the opportunity to be on earth and serve the Kingdom. Can you please give your insight into this incident? -- Paul (Cochin, India)

The Bible records that this couple agreed to deceive the church leaders about their commitment, to pretend to be giving more than they really were. This was a deep spiritual issue, which Peter says was "lying to the Holy Spirit." The Bible does not say whether they lost their salvation or not, though I am sure different people will have different opinions on this.

As the New Testament says "Satan had filled their hearts" (Acts 5:3), I would be hesitant to affirm that this couple died saved. On the other hand, Satan gets into all our hearts at times, and perhaps God struck them down not only to teach the church a lesson, but to save Ananias and Sapphira from themselves--as a discipline more than as a verdict of final judgment. Yes, God is the judge.

While the NT has nothing to say about how much Christians are to give, it has plenty to say about the spirit and attitude in which they give.

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