Sect

Sect vs Christianity

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Sect
ACTS 24 COMMENTARY
Acts 24:5-13 Sect of the Nazarenes

Acts 24:14-21 Sect

Acts 24:22-27 Felix
ACTS 24:14  14 “But this I confess to you, that according to the Way which they call a sect, so I worship the God of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets.

How does Paul defend Christianity - "the Way which they call a sect" (Acts 24:14)?
He references the Scripture, indicating that his Christian beliefs are in line with "all things which are written in the Law and in the Prophets" (Acts 24:14).

How is this different today for distinguishing Christianity from sects?
It isn't. Whether or not a group is truly Christian or a sect depends neither on its size nor how long it has been around but on the adherence of its beliefs and practices to the Scripture, both the Old Testament law and prophecies that Paul referenced above, and their fulfillment in the New Testament. Groups whose beliefs and practices adhere to the Bible are Christian. Sects include all other groups, whose beliefs and practices do not adhere to the Bible, which God closed with a stern warning: "For I testify to everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: If anyone adds to these things, God will add to him the plagues that are written in this book; and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part from the Book of Life, from the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book" (Revelation 22:18-19).

ACTS 24:15  15 “I have hope in God, which they themselves also accept, that there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust.

Is it true that "there will be a resurrection of the dead, both of the just and the unjust" (Acts 24:15)?
Yes, and the just will enjoy heaven while the unjust burn in hell/lake of fire (see Resurrection).

ACTS 24:16  16 “This being so, I myself always strive to have a conscience without offense toward God and men.

What is Paul saying above?
That his life is driven by "hope in God" (Acts 24:15) and heaven, not by earthly gains.

Is this true of your life?
 

ACTS 24:17-19  17 “Now after many years I came to bring alms and offerings to my nation, 18 in the midst of which some Jews from Asia found me purified in the temple, neither with a mob nor with tumult. 19 They ought to have been here before you to object if they had anything against me.

Who were missing among Paul's accusers?
The "Jews from Asia" (Acts 24:18), Paul's original accusers who ... seeing him in the temple, stirred up the whole crowd and laid hands on him, crying out, “Men of Israel, help! This is the man who teaches all men everywhere against the people, the law, and this place; and furthermore he also brought Greeks into the temple and has defiled this holy place" (Acts 21:27-28). "They ought to have been here before you to object if they had anything against me" (Acts 24:19).

ACTS 24:20-21  20 “Or else let those who are here themselves say if they found any wrongdoing in me while I stood before the council, 21 unless it is for this one statement which I cried out, standing among them, ‘Concerning the resurrection of the dead I am being judged by you this day.’ "

What does Acts 24:21 confirm about Paul's accusers?
They were Sadducees, who do not believe in life after death (see Pharisees and Sadducees).

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