Psalm 31-32 Acts 23:16-35
“Some of the Jews had taken this man and planned to kill him. But I learned that he is a Roman citizen, so I went with my soldiers and saved him.” (Acts 23:27 NCV)
Paul’s nephew overheard a plot against his uncle and brought the information to the commander of the Roman garrison. He made the decision to send Paul to Caesarea to face the governor there and get him away from those who would kill him. His cover letter is an amazing exercise in jumping over a lot of truth and protecting himself to make him look good. I believe that a lot of modern day resume writers study this technique. Yes, the Jews had taken him with the intent to kill him. Yes, he learned that Paul was a Roman citizen. Yes, his soldiers got Paul out of the situation. But, he learned Paul was a citizen only when he was about to beat Paul to get information. The soldiers only saved him to arrest him at first. It’s interesting, though, that Paul didn’t dispute the contents of the letter. It wasn’t necessary to complete his mission.
We run into a lot of people who blur the lines of truth to make themselves look better these days. Sometimes it makes a difference in the way we react to them. Most times, their lie doesn’t affect us. If someone needs to lie to make themselves look better and it doesn’t hurt people, we don’t always need to comment. We don’t always need to correct grammar on the internet. We don’t need to be like the guy whose wife told him to get to bed when she woke up at 3AM and saw him still on the computer because someone was wrong on the internet. Our call is to speak God’s truth of love and grace. Our mission is to proclaim He who is the way, the truth, and the light. We can’t fix the world. We can’t fix the people in the world. What we can do is love them and show them the grace of God. There’s an amazing thing about how God works in people. As God shows them His grace and they come to know Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, He molds them into His image. The lies and half-truths begin to fade away in the light of the truth of Jesus. God has an amazing way of convicting people of the truth while showing them love through the process. Obviously, we can’t let lies hurt people: people practicing medicine without proper knowledge, for instance. But when they puff themselves up, don’t worry about letting the air out. Let them know God’s presence. Let them experience His love. Let God deal with it. He knows what He’s doing.
Lord, it’s hard to love people who continually try to make themselves look good. Help me to show Your love to those who are “never wrong” and “never to blame.” Let me be an instrument of Your peace.
Scripture taken from the New Century Version®. Copyright © 2005 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved