Reflections From ACTS 21-22: “PAUL’S TRIALS AND DEFENSE ARE APPOINTED BY GOD”


paul_before_felix

These two chapters show Paul traveling by boat to many places, the brothers begging him not to venture to Jerusalem for fear of the Jews and their wicked schemes for him, Agabus confirming through prophecy Paul would be in chains which was fulfilled as the apostle made his defense of the Gospel before the Jews.  As Paul recalls his conversion story the term “appointment” caught my attention.

In 22:10 the text reads: “Get up and go into Damascus and there you will be told of all that has been appointed for you to do.”  And again in 22:14 the scripture says: “…The God of our fathers has appointed you to know His will and to see the Righteous One and to hear an utterance from His mouth.”  I’m arrested by this term because appointments are usually deliberations of time between two parties (E.g., I make an appointment with my doctor for a check-up on Monday 10am).  Now these appointments can be changed, delayed or cancelled.  But in Paul’s case, God did not deliberate with him.  Instead, God set the time, day and place where Paul would be converted for the purpose of being God’s useful chosen instrument.  Included in Paul’s calling were the marks of Christ on his body and imprisonment.  Yet, Paul’s chains could not chain the word of God he preached which unchained the captives who received the message.

May Paul’s life and message be ever more evident in our lives.

(SDG)

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