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ACTION IN ACTS  -  PHASE 4               “AND SO WE CAME TO ROME      SESSION  6

ACTS 28/1-32

INTRODUCTION:

What a simple statement with which to bring our studies on “Action in Acts” to a close. It belies the larger picture of lynch mobs, storms, snake bites, religious trials, conspiracies. These are all summed up with those few words, “…and so we came to Rome”.

 [1] ANOTHER ATTEMPT (28/3-6)

a. Paul was bitten by a deadly snake. Assumption = he must be a murderer who escaped via shipwreck but justice will not permit him to live. But they changed their minds when Paul didn’t die within the prescribed time frame and they decided he was a god! Talk about extremes

Yet, do we not do the same or similar things in our assessment of people? E.g. they raise their hands when singing in Church= they must be charismatic. (I’ll bet they speak in tongues. too!)

AN ASIDE: I once heard a preacher explain this ‘miracle’ by saying it was probably an old snake or it had already bitten someone else that day and was low on venom. (Good for a giggle).

However we may feel about that event, at least these people were open-minded and willing to make such adjustments as necessary.

b. This event, together with the healing of Publius (8), forged a bond and opened the way for mutual interaction. These people on the island of Malta showed gracious hospitality over the 3 months between the shipwreck and the survivors’ final departure.

[2] FULFILMENT

Of course, we might dismiss such an achievement by attributing it all to the presence and activity of God. That would be true but let’s not be dismissive to the point where we lose our sense of awe.

The truth is that God decreed (Acts 23:11) that Paul would preach the Good News
 

That night the Lord appeared to Paul and said, “Be encouraged, Paul. Just as you have been a witness to me here in Jerusalem, you must preach the Good News in Rome as well.” Acts 23/11


30  For the next two years, Paul lived in Rome at his own expense. He welcomed all who visited him,
31  boldly proclaiming the Kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ. And no one tried to stop him. (Acts 28/30,31)

 

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