Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday Sharing: Why Didn't Paul Listen and What If He Had?

For my scripture highlight of the week, I chose Acts 21:4, 12-13 and 30-31 which says:

(4) We looked up the Lord's followers and stayed with them for a week [in Tyre].  The Holy Spirit had told them to warn Paul not to go on to Jerusalem. (12) After Agabus said this, we and the followers living there begged Paul not to go to Jerusalem.  (13) But Paul answered, "Why are you crying and breaking my heart?  I am not only willing to be put in jail for the lord Jesus.  I am even willing to die for him in Jerusalem!" 

Paul did not listen to the warning and in this case, went on to Jerusalem:

(30) The whole city was in an uproar and the people turned into a mob.  They grabbed Paul and dragged him out of the temple.  Then suddenly the doors were shut.  (31) The people were about to kill Paul when the Roman army commander heard that all Jerusalem was starting to riot.
Here's my thoughts:

Previously, Paul always listened when the Holy Spirit prevented him or told him not to go somewhere.  In Acts 18:21, He told them good-bye and said, "If God lets me, I will come back."  This showed Paul was acknowledging God in his plans and that he was willing to go wherever God wanted.  I am curious as to why Paul did not listen this time when he was warned not to go to Jerusalem.

I also wonder if Paul had listened, if he would have been spared this incident had he waited for God's timing and wonder what God had planned for him instead.  I guess that's something I'll never know unless I remember to ask Paul and God when I see them in heaven some day.

Finally, this passage reminded me of James 4:13-15 which says:
(13) You should know better than to say, "Today or tomorrow we will go to the city.  We will do business there for a year and make a lot of money!"  (14) What do you know about tomorrow?  How can you be so sure about your life?  It is nothing more than a mist that appears for only a little while before it disappears.  (15) You should say, "If the Lord lets us live, we will do these things."  
Contemporary English Version
Even though Paul went to Jerusalem in spite of the Holy Spirit's warning, God still used him there to speak to the very crowd that tried to kill him! 

I'd love to hear your thoughts on this or your scripture highlight of the week in the comments.

(all scripture passages are from the Contemporary English Version.)

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Sandee said...

Have a blessed Sunday Karen. Scritches to the babies. :)

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