Thursday 19 May 2011

Bible Book:

"Brothers, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, give it." (v. 15)

Acts 13:13-25 Thursday 19 May 2011


And we are off again, and the journey continues, and the speedof travel appears to be breathtaking. Suddenly we find that Saulhas become Paul, and, and, and ... this story is moving veryquickly. In a handful of verses we have travelled across most ofthe Roman province of Galatia. Why we lost John Mark en route isnot made entirely clear but it could point to the subsequent riftbetween Paul and Barnabas (Acts15:36-41).

Paul has very much taken centre stage now and the passage openswith the declaration that it is Paul and his companions who setsail to Paphos. As always, Paul begins his mission by entering thelocal synagogue. After being invited to give a word of exhortationby the officials of the synagogue, Paul offers the Jewish communityand all those who fear God, what has been called by biblicalscholars, the 'Testimony of the Past'. This is a long speech whichmight, by today's standards, be considered a rough guide to thestory of God's dealings with the people of Israel; a resumé toremind them that the biblical story is moving to a particular pointin history, a fulfilment of a promise, and that is the Christevent.

To Ponder

We hear much in contemporary life about thework/life balance. How do you think Paul might have understoodthis, and, how do you understand Paul's drive to spread the gospel?How this might influence your life now?

What would you include in a potted history of thestory of the engagement of God with the world to a friend to helpthem understand the good news?

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