“Now as he [Paul] reasoned about righteousness, self-control, and the judgment to come, Felix was afraid and answered, “Go away for now; when I have a convenient time I will call for you.” Meanwhile he also hoped that money would be given him by Paul, that he might release him. Therefore he sent for him more often and conversed with him.” (Acts 24:25–26, NKJV)
Reflection: The Apostle Paul was being kept in prison and Felix, the Governor, was to rule over his situation based upon accusations raised against him. Paul saw it as an opportunity to share the Gospel. As Felix listened to the words of Paul, he continued to put off and procrastinate regarding regarding his message. Felix was interested in obtaining money from Paul and not the message of the Gospel.
Application: To know that even the Apostle Paul faced rejection from his hearers is encouraging. It also shares a message about how long a person can invest in relationships and still see nothing for the effort. Paul shared the Good News hoping to "persuade" Felix. May we too be "persuasive" in winning souls through the power of the Holy Spirit and keep a positive attitude because it is God who does the saving and not us.
And the things that you have heard from me among many witnesses, commit these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
Reflection: Central to the Great Commission is evangelism. Preparing others to spread the Gospel was the work which Jesus did and it is a message that is to be spread from to another. Jesus didn't just tell them how, he lived it in front of them. How we all need Godly leaders who will live out evangelism in front of us.
Application: Are you spreading the message of the Gospel so that others can know the way to salvation? If not, find the excuse and eliminate it today!
The New King James Version (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), 2 Ti 2:2.
And He appointed twelve, so that they would be with Him and that He could send them out to preach
Reflection: A Bible teacher explained that Jesus selected twelve and "appointed" them to spend time with them so that they would be prepared and it consists of two separate aspects. The first is that He would "be with" them. The second is that He "could send them out to preach." There is an initial time they spent with Him and then He commissioned them to go to deliver the message of the Gospel.
Application: How important it is for us to seek to spend time daily in prayer and Bible study seeking the Lord and then going out to share the incredible message of the Good News of Jesus Christ.
New American Standard Bible : 1995 Update (LaHabra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995), Mk 3:14.
But those things, which God before had shewed by the mouth of all his prophets, that Christ should suffer, he hath so fulfilled.
Reflection: After Peter’s restoration, he was soon preaching before the “men of Israel.” In this address, he is here bringing to light the truth of the Scriptures and the fulfillment by Jesus Christ. Spurgeon made the following note, “See how he woos them, as a mother does her child, and interprets their wicked conduct as kindly as he can.”
Application: Lord help us to bear with those who have never heard the Gospel as we attempt to share with them the light of God’s truth. Help us to endure and bear with them because God's Word will do exactly what He has promised it will do.
C. H. Spurgeon, The Interpreter: Spurgeon's Devotional Bible (Bellingham, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 2009), 637.
"Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word."
Reflection: Prior to the Apostle Paul's conversion, he went about "entering every house, and dragging off men and women, commtting them to prison" (Acts 8:3). What happened as a result of the persecution by Saul was the spread of the Gospel into other areas. Notice how in the scattering of the new believers, they went "everywhere preaching the word." They went and told the Good News wherever they ended up. Isn't it interesting to think that even prior to Saul's conversion, God was spreading the Gospel!
Application: Are you making an attempt to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with those around you? Begin spreading the Good News of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and "preach" to others to "repent and believe in the Gospeol" (Mark 1:15) wherever the Lord has you now.
The New King James Version (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), Ac 8:4.
"Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation."
Reflection: The ministry Paul had was a ministry of reconciliation. This is the ministry of every born again Christian which involves seeking and saving the lost. It involes sharing the reconciliation you have experienced with others and spreading the Good News of the Gospel.
Application: If you are looking for a ministry to get involved in, realize that you have a ministry of reconciliation and begin evangelizing right where you are and reach out to a lost and dying world that is headed for hell.
The New King James Version (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), 2 Co 5:18–19.
"Brethren, I do not count myself to have apprehended; but one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward to those things which are ahead..."
Reflection: Thinking of how mightily God used the Apostle Paul, even he was keenly aware of the spiritual battle. The antidote Paul used here is not one of thinking deeply on his past and mulling it over and over again. No, Paul said to "forget" the events and not just to "forget" them, but to replace them with this one goal... "reaching forward to those things that are ahead."
Application: Are you surrounded by memories of the past? Ask God to cause your mind to meditate on the future. Begin reading Scripture and bathing your mind in the Word and fix your thoughts on the promises of Scripture. Let the concept of the Great Commission in Matthew 28:19-20 become your own personal mission statement and share the Gospel message of Jesus Christ with others.
The New King James Version. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), Php 3:13.
Scripture: "Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."
Reflection: When we encounter difficult people in our lives, there can be the tendency to want to retaliate and bring about our own justice. In the Romans chapter 12, the Apostle Paul speaks about the matter of Christian behavior. In it, he explains a key factor in dealing with difficult people. He explains how there needs to be room for God's "wrath." God will ultimately take care of matters. Here Paul gives us some instruction to "overcome" the evils that are encountered with doing "good." This runs counter to natural behavior and is opposite to the way the world operates, but it becomes the best way to handle a situation. God will ultimately take care of the rest.
Application: Look for ways to do good in an effort to combat the "evil" that may come your way. For Christians, the one way to be proactive is to be serving in a ministry. Seeking and saving the lost is the great commission and a way to share the Gospel truth about Jesus Christ in love with others.
The New King James Version. (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982), Ro 12:21.
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