In Isolation Thoughts 2

Hymn: Guide me O Thou great Redeemer

Bible Reading:  Acts 21. 7-16

Determination in His Service

Paul continued with his journey across the Mediterranean and eventually landed on the coast of Israel and made his way to Caesarea, where he stayed with Philip. We recall that Philip was one of the seven men chosen to support the Apostles in their ministry. He led the Ethiopian Official to the Lord and was a very active preacher who settled in Caesarea, It is interesting that we are informed about his daughters, four of them all unmarried but with the gift of prophecy.  Earlier in Acts, we are told that Philip was full of the Holy Spirit, so we see that he had witnessed to his family and they were given a role in the early church. It also reminds us that there are different gifts that God gave to his church to create balance and completeness, it is not a one-man ministry. Neither do we all possess all the necessary gifts; God gives them as they are needed and to the person He has chosen.

Rest and Recuperation

Even for someone like Paul, it was important to rest and regain strength. He had had a long sea voyage as well as travelling south from Ptolemais to Caesarea. There are times when we need to do the same. Athletes have rest periods in their training, so they are in their best condition for the next event. The past years had been traumatic for Paul, he had seen the gospel spread to the Gentiles as well as to the Jews. God had led him and given him the strength he needed, the skills he used and the encouragement of a growing church. Paul didn’t object to the wait and was preparing himself to go to Jerusalem.

Sign and Sorrow

On to the scene comes Agabus, he travelled north from Judea specifically to meet Paul. He approached Paul, took Paul’s belt and tied his own hands and feet. This was a significant act and he explained it to those who were there. It was a warning that the owner of the belt would be tied by Jewish Leaders and handed over to the Gentile authorities. The whole group were upset, they tried to dissuade Paul from continuing to Jerusalem. Paul was adamant, I will go, the Lord wants me to go even if it means imprisonment or death, I will not disobey God’s will.

Travel and Termination

The sign did not stop Paul, he set out on the final stage of his journey without fear. He knew God’s will; he would complete the call. He had support on the way with some of the church members from Caesarea travelling with him. If they could not stop Paul making the journey, then they would go with him. They stopped at the house of a Cypriot believer, Mnason, an early convert, before going into the city of Jerusalem. Notice in these last few verses that the term disciples was being used as a description of church members, disciples are followers, those who are committed to a particular belief, they had become disciples of Jesus. they were following His teaching.

The lessons for us are obvious, there are times when we need to rest, ready to move on to the next area of work or continue in the present one. We need to be guided by the Lord and not put off by others. Look for the signs to guide us. Finally, we have a destination to attain, we must not be diverted from our main calling, to be His Disciples.

Prayer

Hymn: We rest on Thee

 


Page last updated: 12th June 2021 9:14 PM
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