Scripture: Acts 26:
28 Then Agrippa said to Paul, "Do you think that in such a short time you can persuade me to be a Christian?"
29 Paul replied, "Short time or long—I pray to God that not only you but all who are listening to me today may become what I am, except for these chains."
30 The king rose, and with him the governor and Bernice and those sitting with them. 31 After they left the room, they began saying to one another, "This man is not doing anything that deserves death or imprisonment."
32 Agrippa said to Festus, "This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar."
Observation: It may seem unwise to the worldly, but God’s wisdom goes beyond what we see, hear and understand with our physical eyes.
Application: As we begin to approach the final chapters of Acts and see what the end of Paul’s race looks like we can notice some similarities here in his and Jesus’ story. One thing that is brought out is the fact that Paul seemed to know what was coming, and despite the knowledge that he would end up dying for the cause, he continued on his mission to complete what he felt God wanted him to do.
Agrippa takes notice that if it had not been for Paul himself appealing to Caesar that he would have been set free. So what is it that makes Paul want to continue down a road that he obviously knew would lead to destruction? I think it is the knowledge that God is doing something through his actions that is bigger and broader than his physical life. Because Paul knew that God had a plan for him, and felt that he was being led into this confrontation for a reason, Paul was able to go on without fear.
I think many of us feel that we have a higher purpose that God has laid out before us. It is the purpose of spreading the good news of Jesus to a world who is in desperate need of a savior. No matter what happens to us, we know that God is bringing about wonderful things through the ministry that he sets us to, and we should feel privileged to suffer for Christ in whatever way we do. So as we continue with our work, and we feel that we are outcast by the world, count it all joy, and with a glad heart continue on till the race is won and God calls us home.
Prayer: Lord God,
Thank you for the ministry you have called me to. If I face struggles and hardships, help me to realize that I am in good company with the Saints of Light and help me to continue on in the example that they have laid down before me. Forgive me when I feel sorry for myself or think that the road ahead may be too hard to travel. Give me courage to stand up for you in all that I do, and if this cup shall not pass without my drinking it, let your will be done!