I hope to encourage you every morning with insights from our reading plan. I pray that this is an encouragement to you. Please let me know what speaks to you today!
Read Acts 22
In chapter 22 of the book of Acts we see a dialogue between Paul and the Jews that wanted to kill him. Paul had been falsely accused but was using this as an opportunity to share the Gospel to the people around him. From this chapter I drew out three big implications for us. I hope that you are encouraged to press forward.
1. Language Matters. When Paul was addressing the crowd, he was addressing Jews. In that time people spoke multiple languages. To be successful in trade they had to. But the language of the Jews was Hebrew. This was their heart language. Paul addressed them in their heart language. If you went with us to NYC then you know that we are surrounded by languages. While we speak English and you may want everyone to speak the same language, that doesn’t change someone’s heart language, their dream language. This is why we must learn how to share the Gospel in other tongues. To speak to someone on a deeper language. Paul knew what would get to their hearts. It was Greek, it was Hebrew.
2. Your Story Matters. Paul addressed the crowd by sharing his story. He shared with them how he was brought up under a famous Jewish rabbi. That he was formally trained to be a Pharisee and persecuted Christians. He knew where they were coming from. On his way to Damascus he saw a great light and heard a great voice. Then he was led to Damascus where he met Ananias who shared the Gospel with him. Paul trusted in Christ and began to share the Gospel with others. He had been changed. If you are a believer in Christ, you have a story to tell. Who you were before Christ, how you met Christ, and what He is doing through you now. I challenge you to share that story with others.
3. Your Cultural Understading Matters. Once they heard that Paul was to share with the Gentiles that sent them over the edge. They were ready to kill him. The Roman Tribune sought to examine him and find out who he was by flogging him, to beat the truth out of him. Paul knew that they could do that to anyone they wanted, except a Roman citizen. Roman citizen carried with it rights that others did not have. To claim to be a Roman citizen and not be was punishable by death. Paul was a Roman citizen and knew that he could not be beated without a trial. Cultures are different. In America you have rights. You also are innocent until proven guilty. As our culture continues to go secular, it is wise to know and understand our laws. To know what is appropriate and what is not. You may think this is crazy, but we have been warned in scripture, persecution will come.
I pray that as you look to God’s Word you find peace. You know that our God is a God of order. God wants us to use wisdom in our everyday. God wants us to tell others of the great hope that we have. Again, let me know how God spoke to you in this chapter. What insights did you get?