Perspective 1- Pastor Phil

What’s your story?

In this chapter Paul shares his story or testimony with a number of people. It doesn’t always lead people to conversion or make people weep with sadness or joy. Unfortunately people will sometimes reject your story but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t tell it.

Paul had an experience with the risen Christ that changed his life forever. We see it once again as he retells the Damascus road story in chapter 30. It changed his life in such a way that he couldn’t avoid talking about it with the people he came into contact with. There was no way that he was going to shut-up about this, even if he was threatened with beatings and death. There was no stopping it!

When Jesus comes to us in our messy lives today, how can we stay unchanged and not talk about it? Have you spent time thinking about your story? What are the experiences you have had that God used to shape you? Who are the people whom God has put in your life to shape who you are?

We all have a story to tell. So what’s yours?

Perspective 2- Barb Miles 

Paul proclaimed the gospel among all classes of people, from the palace to the prison.

He knew he would not be on earth forever, so he wanted people – believers to use their gifts to be continual witnesses throughout the generations.  He spent time in jail twice  through these years of teaching and witnessing.  He did not wait for anyone to ask him who he was or what he was professing, but went first into the synagogue in the town he was visiting.

What a life well lived….What an example God has provided us. Whenever we feel down or discouraged, let us remember Paul.

Perspective 3- Dan Petrak

Perspective 4- Pastor Ron

The Apostle Paul has always fascinated me.  His tenacity, intellect, and mostly his passion for sharing the Gospel are inspirational.

In the later part of his ministry he feels compelled to go to Jerusalem.  The Holy Spirit tells him that he will be imprisoned.  The prophet Agabus demonstrates it for him by binding his hands and feet with Paul’s belt and declaring this is what is going to happen to you.  The people plead with him not to go.  Paul, convinced that God wants him to return to Jerusalem is relentless in his journey.  Sure enough they nearly beat him to death in Jerusalem, but what does he do as the Roman soldiers are carrying him off to jail where he will be safe?  He asks for permission to speak and starts making a case for the Gospel!  You read all of this and you think okay he has passion for the message, but I am not so sure about his intellect.  Just wait!

The next thing you know he is in front of the Sanhedrin – the Jewish court.  He knows that there are Pharisees and Sadducees in the group.  Pharisees believe in the resurrection from the dead for all people, while the Sadducees do not.  So Paul announces that he is a Pharisee and says that he is on trial because he believes in the resurrection of the dead.  Brilliant!  The Pharisees in the room come to his defense and begin arguing with the Sadducees.  The end result is that Paul is happy you see!  (I couldn’t resist that last line, but it does demonstrate Paul’s keen intellect.)

Paul is a powerful example of what happens when God gets ahold of your heart.  He uses all the uniqueness that He poured into you to bring about good for the kingdom.  How has God used all of your uniqueness to bring about good for the kingdom?