In Today's Scripture Reading:
Jewish opposition; Paul and Silas in Berea; Paul on Mars Hill; in Corinth he meets Priscilla and Aquila; Ephesus; silversmiths
The Apostle Paul and his coworker Silas were brutally beaten by a mob in Philippi and thrown into prison. However, through God's intervention, they were released the next day. Paul was no quitter, and when they had seen the brethren, they comforted them, and departed. . . . to Thessalonica (Acts 16:40 — 17:1). Wherever he went, he always attended a Jewish synagogue. Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three Sabbath (Rest) days reasoned with them out of the Scriptures, Opening and alleging (giving evidence), that Christ must needs (necessarily) have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ. And some of them believed (17:2-4).
When the unbelieving religious leaders became aware of these conversions, they were outraged and started a riot. Immediately afterwards, Paul left by night and traveled southwest to Berea. Upon arrival, they went into the synagogue of the Jews. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the Word with all readiness of mind, and searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things were so. Therefore many of them believed (17:10-12). Confessing Jesus as their Messiah was a monumental decision that would affect all people in their lives — family, friends, and business associates. Their dedication to the truth should encourage everyone, regardless of religious training, to study all the Scriptures with a sincere desire to know the Truth it reveals.
Our Creator has allotted each of us with only one lifetime to prepare for our eternal destiny. We have a dual responsibility — to become the person He wants us to be in order to accomplish the purposes for which He created us. Think how tragic it will be to face Jesus for those who have failed to fulfill the will of God and wasted their few short years only achieving material, social, and financial goals for self-gratification. God has provided one perfect Guidebook — His Word. When we obey it and follow Jesus as our Savior and our God we have peace with God (Romans 5:1; I Timothy 2:5).
The times of this ignorance God winked at (overlooked); but now commandeth all men every where to repent: Because He hath appointed a day, in . . . which He will judge the world in righteousness (Acts 17:30-31).
17:19 Areopagus =b> the Athenian council which met on Mars Hill; 17:29 Godhead =b> the Trinity — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit.
Pray for The English International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts sponsored by Charles and Josephine Van Boskirk • Staff: Al Joslyn Jr. • Government Officials: Gov. Bill Richardson (NM) and Rep. Ellen Tauscher (CA) • Country: Romania (22.5 million) in southeastern Europe • Major languages: Rumanian and Hungarian • Freedom of worship • 69.5% Romanian Orthodox Church; 14% non-Religious/Other; 8% Protestant; 7% Catholic; 1% Muslim; .1% Jewish; .4% Marginal • Prayer Suggestion: Ask for forgiveness for particular sins (Psalm 51:1-9).
Memory Verse for the Week: Titus 2:12