Day 36: Acts 17:10-21

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10 The brothers immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived they went into the Jewish synagogue. 11 Now these Jews were more noble than those in Thessalonica; they received the word with all eagerness, examining the Scriptures daily to see if these things were so. 12 Many of them therefore believed, with not a few Greek women of high standing as well as men. 13 But when the Jews from Thessalonica learned that the word of God was proclaimed by Paul at Berea also, they came there too, agitating and stirring up the crowds. 14 Then the brothers immediately sent Paul off on his way to the sea, but Silas and Timothy remained there. 15 Those who conducted Paul brought him as far as Athens, and after receiving a command for Silas and Timothy to come to him as soon as possible, they departed.

16 Now while Paul was waiting for them at Athens, his spirit was provoked within him as he saw that the city was full of idols. 17 So he reasoned in the synagogue with the Jews and the devout persons, and in the market-place every day with those who happened to be there. 18 Some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers also conversed with him. And some said, “What does this babbler wish to say?” Others said, “He seems to be a preacher of foreign divinities”—because he was preaching Jesus and the resurrection. 19 And they took him and brought him to the Areopagus, saying, “May we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? 20 For you bring some strange things to our ears. We wish to know therefore what these things mean.” 21 Now all the Athenians and the foreigners who lived there would spend their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new.

POINTS OF INTEREST

  • V11 – The berean Jews searched the scriptures for themselves to verify the message that Paul was preaching. We need to ensure that we have discernment in making sure that teachings are in line with what the bible says.
  • V16 – It is amazing to see how eager Paul is to stand up and speak for God. Everywhere he goes he is preaching to those around him that are worshipping other god’s, even when he’s waiting for Timothy and could just as easily use that time to rest.
  • V16 – The Greek word used for “distressed” is “Paroxysm” meaning sudden violent emotion. Here we can see just how much the idol worshipping caused Paul to be filled with anger and grief! Does the idol worship we see in the world today leave us feeling troubled and wanting to see a change?
  • V18 – The Epicurean believed that seeking happiness & pleasure was the primary goal in life – so you can see why when Paul preached about our purpose was to be in a relationship with God and to glorify God, this was an alien concept to them.
  • V18 – The Stoics belief was that thinking was before feeling, trying to live in harmony with nature and reason. This mentality that a higher form of life was to be earnt, also stands in stark contrast to the personal relationship God wants with all—which involves a God who humbled himself to die for all.

submitted by Michael Gregory

 

PRAYING IN FAITH

For Yourself

That God would change your heart through the Holy Spirit, so that you too will feel the grief Paul felt concerning idolatry, even the idolatry around you today.

For your five 

That your five would be interested in hearing about what you believe as a Christian and that you would have the opportunity to share this with them.

For the church 

That as a church we would be discerning about what we hear and that we encourage each other to study God’s word.

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