“Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, ‘which is right in God’s eyes: to listen to you, or to him? You be the judges! As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”
Here in Acts 4, we see clearly the boldness of John and Peter as they speak out and proclaim the name of Jesus. And their message to the Jewish leaders was very clear: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed... Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.
Peter preaches with boldness Jesus! The Jesus they crucified, the Jesus that God raised from the dead, and the Jesus that brought healing to the lame man. And Peter doesn’t proclaim Jesus as a way of salvation, but as the only way of salvation! There is only One who is able to save: Jesus.
The Sanhedrin saw the boldness of these two men, and so they conferred together. The Sanhedrin had heard the message that John and Peter shared, and had a chance to respond. However, instead of hearing and accepting the message that Peter preached, they wanted to silence him. And so they gave John and Peter a command not to speak in the name of Jesus.
I wonder how John and Peter felt at this moment. They would surely have been in trouble and in danger. They had a decision to make: be obedient to the Sanhedrin, or be obedient to the call of God, to be His witnesses! Again we see their boldness and obedience to God in their response: which is right? To listen to man or to listen to God? To be obedient to man, or to be obedient to God? Despite the fact it may land them in trouble and in danger, the decision seems straight forward for them: As for us, we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.
Let’s take our example from John and Peter; to be strong, to be bold, to speak out the message of salvation to a world in desperate need of saving! And when opposition comes, let’s not be discouraged, but be obedient to God as His witnesses.