Bible Reading for NOV21: Acts 22-24

After Paul had been seized, he was taken
before the council. It was the same council that had
crucified Jesus; the same council of which Paul had once
been a member; the same council that had stoned Stephen;
and the same council that had made repeated efforts to
crush the church. Paul stood before this council and
gave his life’s story. In the first five verses of
chapter 22 he tells of his early conduct; in verses 6-16
he tells of his amazing conversion; and in verses 17-21
he tells of the special commission that had been given
to him. Notice the one factor that made the Jewish
people so irate at Paul. It was not his conduct, for he
was gracious and gentle as he presented his speech. His
heart overflowed with love and pity for them, so he did
not offend them with his attitude. It was the truth of
the Word of God that offended them. They were sinful,
degenerate men; and, when the truth was told to them,
they responded against the one who was speaking the
truth.

At this point, it would be good to review the
nation of Israel in the Book of Acts. The nation had
already committed three murders. John the Baptist had
been beheaded, Christ had been crucified, and Stephen
had been stoned. The people had great intentions, at
this point, of committing the fourth murder; but God
delivered Paul through the intervention of a Roman
guard. It is interesting to note that on several
occasions the Lord appeared to Paul to sustain him.
During the Jewish attacks at Corinth, Christ assured
Paul that He would be with him and give him many
converts (chapter 18:9-11); on board ship going to Rome,
during the storm, Christ assured Paul that He would not
forsake him (chapter 27:21-25). I feel sure Paul must
have leaned heavily on Psalm 23:4, “Yea, though I walk
through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear
no evil: for thou art with me.”

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