Monday, April 26, 2010

Acts 16:11-15

"11From Troas we put out to sea and sailed straight for Samothrace, and the next day on to Neapolis. 12From there we traveled to Philippi, a Roman colony and the leading city of that district of Macedonia. And we stayed there several days.

13On the Sabbath we went outside the city gate to the river, where we expected to find a place of prayer. We sat down and began to speak to the women who had gathered there. 14One of those listening was a woman named Lydia, a dealer in purple cloth from the city of Thyatira, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul's message. 15When she and the members of her household were baptized, she invited us to her home. "If you consider me a believer in the Lord," she said, "come and stay at my house." And she persuaded us."

Lydia's Conversion
Paul did not head to the synagogue as he usually did to share the Word, this time he went outside the city gate to the river. My commentary states that inscribed on the arches outside the city of Philippi was a prohibition against bringing an unrecognized religion into the city; therefore, this prayer meeting was held outside the city beside the river.

Led by the Holy Spirit, Paul made his first evangelistic contact with a small gorup of women in Phillipi, he was not held back by gender or cultural boundaries, his misison was to preach the gospel.

Lydia was a dealer in purple cloth, so she was probably wealthy. Purple cloth was valuable and expensive. It was often worn as a sign of nobility or royalty. She was obviously an influential businesswoman. When God opened her heart and she believed, she influenced her whole household. She was then identified as a Christian, belonging to Christ, she and her family.

No comments: