Friday, April 23, 2010

Acts 16:1-10

"1Paul came to Derbe and then to Lystra, where a disciple named Timothy lived, whose mother was a Jewess and a believer, but whose father was a Greek. 2The brothers at Lystra and Iconium spoke well of him. 3Paul wanted to take him along on the journey, so he circumcised him because of the Jews who lived in that area, for they all knew that his father was a Greek. 4As they traveled from town to town, they delivered the decisions reached by the apostles and elders in Jerusalem for the people to obey. 5So the churches were strengthened in the faith and grew daily in numbers.

Paul's Vision of the Man of Macedonia

6Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. 7When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to. 8So they passed by Mysia and went down to Troas. 9During the night Paul had a vision of a man of Macedonia standing and begging him, "Come over to Macedonia and help us."

10After Paul had seen the vision, we got ready at once to leave for Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them."

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He mother, Eunice & grandmother, Lois (2Timothy 1:5) had become believers and had faithfully influenced him for the Lord. Although Timothy's father apparently was not a Christian, the faithfulness of Timonthy's mother and grandmother prevailed.

NEVER underestimate the far-reaching consequences of raising one small child to love the Lord!

Timothy was the son of a Jewish mother and Greek father - to the Jews, a half-breed like a Samaritan. So Paul asked Timothy to be circumcised to remove some of the stigma he may have had with Jewish believers. He was not required to be circumcised, since the Jerusalem council had decided that in chapter 15, however, he voluntarily did this to overcome any barriers to his witness for Christ.

Sometimes we need to go beyond the minimum requirements in order to help our audience receive our testimony.

V. 7 "The Spirit of Jesus" is another name for the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit guides us to the right places even today, but he also guides us away from the wrong places. As we seek God's will, it is important to know what God wants us to do and where he wants us to go, but it is equally important to know what God does not want us to do and where he does not want us to go!

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