Gamaliel was a member of the council — a Pharisee & a teacher of the law who was highly respected by all the people (241). He stood up and ordered the 12 witnesses to be taken out for a while. Then Gamaliel spoke to the council about the witnesses for Jesus.
“Fellow Israelites, be careful what you do to these men.
“Remember Theudas, who some time ago claimed to be somebody great? About four hundred men joined him, but later he was killed, all his followers were scattered & his movement died out.
“Remember Judas the Galilean, who appeared during the time of the census? He drew a crowd after him, but he also was killed & all his followers were scattered.
“In the case of this Jesus, I advise you not to take any action against these men. If what they have planned & done is of human origin, it will fade away.
“But if their ministry comes from God, you cannot possibly defeat them. And you do not want to find yourselves fighting against God!”
The council decided to defer to the counsel of Gamaliel. They called the 12 witnesses in, had them whipped & again ordered them never to speak in the name of Jesus. And then they set them free!
As the witnesses left the council, they were joyful because God had considered them worthy to suffer public disgrace for the sake of Jesus!
And every day, in the temple & in people’s homes, they continued to teach & preach the good news about Jesus the Messiah.
(241) Acts 5:34-42