WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 5
40 And when he had given him permission, Paul, standing on the steps, motioned with his hand to the people. And when there was a great hush, he addressed them in the Hebrew language, saying:
In this passage, we pick back up with Paul as he is on his way to Rome and has been caught up in a riot and has been arrested. We now find Paul begging for the opportunity to speak to Jewish people who are responsible for the riot and arrest.
Paul is in a horrible situation. He has been arrested for crimes he did not commit and could very easily be beaten or killed. This stands as a true obstacle to him completing his mission of carrying the gospel to Rome.
Paul is begging for the opportunity to speak, but not for the reasons we might expect. In a dire situation such as this you would expect someone to beg for mercy and speak out of self-preservation, but not Paul. His desire is to proclaim the gospel. In fact, Paul is leveraging this situation not to save himself but to share of the saving work of Jesus.
This text challenges us to consider the circumstances that we find ourselves in, good or bad, a result of someone else’s decisions or our own, to use these circumstances for gospel proclamation! The obstacle can become the way that we share of Jesus’ goodness.
So may we fight today, not for self-preservation, but gospel proclamation.
How would you respond if you were in Paul’s shoes?
Thank you for your Word. We pray that by your Spirit, Acts 21:40 would change us into the likeness of Christ. We pray that we would leverage all circumstances for your glory. Help us not to wish away the hard things in our lives that can be used the proclamation of the gospel. We need you, Lord! We pray all these things in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Amen.