Acts 22:30-23:22; Judges 19; Psalm 44
Most churches today would have difficulty with Paul’s resumé. They might look very warily at his arrest record. While his arrests were for the right reason, would they really want a guy who had a history of making trouble like that? While Paul was in custody, again, this time for his own protection it seemed, Paul got word from God. “But the following night the Lord stood by him and said, ‘Be of good cheer, Paul; for as you have testified for Me in Jerusalem, so you must also bear witness at Rome.’” (Acts 23:11) Paul had used his imprisonment in Jerusalem a couple of times to testify to the grace of God. Now the promise was that he would be taking that message to Rome. Talk about a good reason to be arrested! God had worked out an all expenses paid trip to Rome for Paul to share the gospel message. And, given the way the Roman system worked, he would have a captive audience with the guards who would be chained to him. Paul went to Jerusalem in spite of the warnings he received that he would be arrested. He knew that God had a plan and now the plan became clear. When we follow Christ we will often take steps that seem foolish or counter-intuitive to others around us. They may even seem foolish to us. If we are faithful in seeking His will and obedient in following it when we recognize it, we’ll eventually understand God’s plan. Then the suffering and the hardships will seem like nothing.
Dear Lord, all I ask is that You give me guidance each day and an obedient heart to follow Your direction. Increase my faith as I’m obedient to You.