Saturday, 10 December 2011

Acts 26

Here's how the study works: Read the chapter mentioned in the heading several times during the week and share any words, thoughts, verses that stood out to you. Having a week for a chapter creates the opportunity to reread it several times and make additional comments as you feel inclined as well as make comments on other people's insights.


Susan said...

v.26 Agrippa said to Festus, “This man could have been set free if he had not appealed to Caesar.”

I mentioned verse when we looked at Acts 25. If Paul had been set free the Jews would have killed him. So this comment is just an attack of the enemy designed to annoy and discourage but otherwise having no real power.

Likewise we need to be discerning and remember that the devil is like a prowling lion - makes a lot of noise but is really toothless!

Susan said...

v.26 The king is familiar with these things, and I can speak freely to him. I am convinced that none of this has escaped his notice, because it was not done in a corner.

Christianity is based on historical events. It was not done "in a corner", or based on a vision, or the dictated writings of a prophet. People like Festus knew the historical events and Paul was able to say: “What I am saying is true and reasonable."

Susan said...

v.6-7 And now it is because of my hope in what God has promised our ancestors that I am on trial today. This is the promise our twelve tribes are hoping to see fulfilled as they earnestly serve God day and night. King Agrippa, it is because of this hope that these Jews are accusing me.

v.22-23 I am saying nothing beyond what the prophets and Moses said would happen— that the Messiah would suffer and, as the first to rise from the dead, would bring the message of light to his own people and to the Gentiles.”

Paul points out that his beliefs did not contradict anything in the Old Testament but rather was the fulfilment of the very things Jews hoped for.

Susan said...

v.14 We all fell to the ground, and I heard a voice saying to me in Aramaic, ‘Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’

The NCV translates this: You are only hurting yourself by fighting Me.

When we resist God we hurt ourselves. If we trust God we don't have to fight to have our own way or defend ourself. Going against God is an uphill battle but doing things God's way is peace.

(From Constable’s Commentary) The figure of kicking against goads was and is a common rural metaphor that describes opposing the inevitable (like "banging your head against a wall"). Such action only hurts the one doing it, not the object of his hostility. This was the case in Paul's antagonism to God that his persecution of Christians expressed.