Read thru New Testament Devotional – July 17, 2017

July 17


Acts 20:1-16

Acts 20:1-5-Paul left Ephesus and went through Macedonia to Greece.  After 3 months he was about to leave for Syria…but a plot by the Jews against him was discovered, so he returned through Macedonia...then arrived in Philippi (:6).  Paul’s traveling companions were: Berea, Aristarchus, Secundus, Gaius, Timothy, Tychicus and Trophimus.  These men had gone on ahead and were waiting on Paul and Luke to meet them in Troas.

Acts 20:6-16-Paul and Luke left Philippi and arrived in Troas.  They stayed for seven days.  On Sunday (:7), they were gathered together and Paul preached a long message...lasting until midnight (:7).  A young man named Eutychus fell out of a third floor window and died (:9).  Paul went to him and said that he was alive (:10-12).  They had not been mistaken about Eutychus…he was dead.  But when Paul embraced him…a miracle took place and he came back to life.  They then continued their meeting and stayed until daybreak (:11).  Luke and some others sailed by boat to Assos.  Paul was going to meet them there…since he had chosen to get there by land.  In Assos, Paul got on board the boat and they sailed to Mitylene, then continued to Chio, Samos, and Miletus.  He bypassed Ephesus, because he knew that if he went there he would stay for a long time…and he was trying to get to Jerusalem before the day of Pentecost.

Prayer: Lord, as I think about Paul's life, he was presented with so many challenges.  He had to debate with opponents, plant new churches, develop leaders, deal with church issues, face people who were literally trying to kill him, and on top of that deal with the day-to-day life of traveling.  It must have been difficult.  And yet, he remained faithful and continued to fulfill the ministry You called him to.  Please help me, Lord.  Sometimes ministry is difficult and Your reassurance and strength are needed to continue. Your wisdom is necessary to know what to do.  Your understanding is crucial in order to deal with people.  Lord, please give strength of spirit.  Sometimes the ministry can be very emotionally draining and physically difficult...especially when the pressure is coming from members within the congregation.

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