CHARACTER STUDY: PAUL 32

KEY SCRIPTURE: Acts 16:3 ” Him would Paul have to go forth with him; and took and circumcised him because of the Jews which were in those quarters: for they knew all that his father was a Greek.”

Read Acts 16:1-6

Paul continued his missionary journey with Silas. In Lystra they found a disciple whose mother was a Jewess but a Grecian father. He was called Timothy. Apostle Paul discovered in this young man one who could be very useful for the work. He took him and circumcised him.

Circumcision in those days was without any anesthetic (an anesthesia is a drug given to a patient to numb the body so he or she would not feel any pain during surgery) support. It was extremely painful to be done by the elderly person yet, Paul insisted that he was circumcised. Paul knew that there was no sacrifice too dear for anyone to make for the course of Christ.  Apostle Paul made sure that there was nothing about Timothy that would place an impediment to the ministry of the gospel among the Jews. As Christian leaders and workers there may come a time as leaders that we have to take decisions that calls on our members to make grave sacrifices. Do not be afraid to let such members do it. There can be no sacrifice too dear to make that we can’t make for God. When it has to do with the course of Christ, no sacrifice is too dear.

In verse 5 Apostle Paul went round the churches and established their faith in the Lord. The churches increased in number (Verse 5). They taught them the word that made their faith to be established. A church that is well taught in the word whose faith is strong in the Lord would definitely increase in number. It is the spiritual growth that results in numerical growth. May we focus our attention on raising sound, strong and stable Christians and the effect would be a consistent growing church.

In Acts 16:6 the scripture says “Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia”. Paul was restrained from going ahead to preach in Asia. What does this mean? Was Paul not preaching in these places by asking for the direct instruction of the Holy Spirit before going to a place? The answers is no, he did not ask. They went anywhere they wanted to go because the word says so. This implies we must not wait to receive a specific instruction before going out to share the word. We must go because the Lord tells us in His word to go everywhere preaching the word. Acting on the word is the leading of the Holy Spirit. God’s word has given us the instruction, just go ahead and do it. If the Lord does not want you to go to a particular place, He would tell you. Until you have that specific word not to go to a particular place keep going to all people and as many that you can reach out to.

PRAYER

Father I pray for all children of God to be ready to make every sacrifice, even if it will cost our very lives, grant us grace to make it to glorify your name.

FURTHER STUDIES

2 Timothy 4:2. Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine.

Matthew 10:27 “What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.”

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