Setting the example Jesus left for us to follow
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The Lord's Grace to Paul as his Trial Continues
Our Weekly Bible Study begins with us reading the assigned scripture ahead of time and preparing our hearts for study and discussion. When we meet (virtually or in person) we first read the scripture as a group, and then take turns sharing and discussing what impacted us the most, and our general interpretation of what we read.
Making Notes as we go through Bible Study is always encouraged, as it helps to increase our understanding of what we have read, and also allows us to become more comfortable and familiar with the Bible.
To make participation easier and more memorable for our younger children, we will include a link to Storybook Bible images of the readings whenever these are available.
This week’s virtual Bible Study focused on Acts 23. After praying and reading through the chapters, we discussed the verses at length, and shared our personal views on what we had read.
The overall theme running through this chapter is the Providence of God. We see how God’s hand is evident in Paul’s situation, and we observe the intricate nature and divine wisdom of the Lord’s plan.
Verse 1: Having a good conscience was extremely important to Paul; even during his days of persecuting Christians he still believed in his heart that he was serving God.
Verse 3: Paul uses the term “whitewashed walls” to describe the High Priest. This term refers to a hypocrite. Jesus had also used the word “whitewashed” in Matthew 23:27 to describe the Pharisees.
Verse 5: Paul is rebuked for speaking in such a manner to the High Priest. He quickly apologizes for his actions and explains that he did not realize that the person he had addressed as such was in fact the High Priest. This is a lesson for all of us; we must respect authority despite our circumstances, and we must also be quick to apologize when we are made aware of our wrongdoings.
Verse 7: Providence is evident as the Holy Spirit leads Paul to speak in a manner that would bring division among the Jews who were persecuting him.
Verse 11:Paul was in a dark period; he did not get a chance to deliver the message of the Gospel in the way he had hoped. The Lord stood by him throughout this time however, appearing to Paul and telling him to “be of good cheer”.
Verses 12: The Jews bound themselves to an oath to kill Paul, showing us that uniting with others is not always for good- many unite with evil intent, just as the Jews did here.
Verse 15: The Jews evil plan involves hypocrisy and deceit.
Verse 16-22: God’s Providence is revealed yet again. First, Paul’s sister’s son is placed in the right place at the right time to assist Paul. The Lord also moves the Chief Captain to keep the information given to him by Paul’s nephew a secret.
Verse 23-24: God provides 470 armed men to go with Paul to protect him along his journey to see Felix, the Governor of Caesarea.
As you read through this week’s Bible passage, ask yourself:
What are MY thoughts on what I am reading?
How can I apply this to MY life?
The Lord Appears to Paul to Encourage Him
Images Courtesy of: Sweet Publishing / FreeBibleimages.org.
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