This is the fifth post in the study, The Power of the Word. As we continued reading in Acts, Paul continued to face his accusers:
God can use every situation. In Acts 25:1-12, Paul’s accusers continue to scheme against him. Paul recognizes their desire to ambush and kill him, and so, Paul appeals to Festus to appear before Caesar. This appeal, which is granted, actually becomes the very means by which Paul will end up in Rome – the very place he has wanted to to share the Gospel. God is using this prison situation to work out His plans for Paul. The very times Satan seems to be at work in our lives, is often the very times God does the most amazing work in our lives.
- We may not always have understanding of our situation. In Acts 25:13-27, Paul is yet before Festus,Â who admits “weren’t any of the crimes I expected” ; “I was at a loss to know” and “For it makes no sense”. He had no idea what to make of it all. At times, we will be in situations where we have no understanding of why it is happening or the cause of the situation. May we admit that we have no understanding and seek clarity. I have to say I congratulate Festus for not being a people pleaser, for he himself believed Paul had done nothing deserving of death.
- There are three parts to every story. In Acts 26:1-22, Paul is given permission to speak once again in his own defense. Paul tells his story completely -Â the good, the bad, and the ugly. He openly states all the wrong he had done in the past to believers – sending them to prison and sometimes condemning them to death. He chose to be honest and open in sharing his story. I know there are parts of my life I sometimes wish had been different. But they are a part of my story and my journey not only in life, but in my relationship with God. Through each twist and turn, the good, the bad, and the ugly, God has worked in my life to change me and to bring me into closer and serious relationship with Him. I find myself most grateful that our God is a “Come as you are” God, not demanding that we get our act together before coming to Him. May we let God use every part of our story to bring Him glory.
- We each have been appointed to go places. In Acts 26:12-23, we find Paul speaking to King Agrippa and those gathered, explaining his encounter with Jesus. Paul admitted before everyone that he had been wrong, done wrong, and had been corrected by God. At times we tend to think we need to present our “perfect selves” to those around us. Yet more often, it is our imperfections which may speak into their hearts. It’s an interesting question to ponder – “Who did God send you to?”
We must share with boldness. As we read Acts 26:24-32, we discover not much has changed for Paul. He is still defending his cause, still in chains, and still sharing the Gospel with those listening. Nothing deterred Paul from sharing about Jesus. Even when he is thought to be insane (see verse 24), he continues to share Jesus. He desired for everyone to come to know the value of knowing Christ and having Him as their Savior. This convicts me for the times when I may have backed off from sharing my faith. When perhaps it didn’t seem so “safe”. I want that same boldness, and the fervor. The study asks – What often stops you from sharing the Good News? Let’s name those roadblocks today and seek to overcome them.
We must share the gospel in every situation,
every place we go,
with every person we are able.
Today I am joining … Inspire Me Monday .