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Bible Pathways 11/15/2003

November 15

Read Acts 17 -- 19

In Today's Reading:

Jewish opposition; Paul and Silas in Berea; Paul on Mars Hill, at Corinth, at Ephesus; Priscilla and Aquila; the 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 to 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 to 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 aspects of 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 for those who fail to fulfill the will of God, wasting their few short years achieving material, social, and financial goals for self-gratification. God has provided one perfect Guidebook — His Word. Obey it and follow Jesus as our Savior and our God (I Timothy 2:5).

The times of this ignorance God winked at (overlooked); but now commands all men every where to repent: Because He has appointed a day, in . . which He will judge the world in righteousness (Acts 17:30-31).

Word Studies:

17:19 Areopagus = the Athenian council which met on Mars Hill; 17:29 Godhead = the Trinity — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit.

Prayer Needs:

Pray for Hermano Pablo Hispanic Ministries · Government Officials: Gov. Bill Richardson (NM) and Rep. Ellen Tauscher (CA) · Country: Chile (15 million) on the southwestern coast of South America · Major language: Spanish · Religious freedom · 63% Roman Catholic; 23% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray and praise God for His faithfulness and mercy in keeping all His promises (II Chronicles 6:14-15).

Memory Verse for the Week: Galatians 5:22

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