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Thursday, April 28, 2016

More on Body Observations

It happened again this morning.  Although a couple of the men could not make it, the three of us dove into Acts 20.  Something that looks like a banal travel log at first glance with the application of observation and discussion yielded some life changing application.
More on Body Observations
Again the men around the table had prepared.  We are not coming to the table cold; that is not having engaged in the text at some significant level.  But for the past two weeks the discussion has yielded more insight for me than my personal study.

One of the men saw a repetition that I missed.  In Acts 20:21 – 26, the phrase solemnly testify occurs three times, if you add testify, which has the same Greek root, it is four times in those six verses.  But the key to that observation was in Acts 20:22, there Paul states that he was bound by the Spirit.

The observation was that this is nearly identical to what Jesus said.  Jesus only did what His Father told Him to do.  Here Paul is bound by the Spirit to do what the Spirit leads him to do.  Further earlier in the chapter, Acts 20:4, we read the list of men who are traveling with Paul.  That mirrors Jesus’ ministry as well.  Look at Mark 3:14.  Like Jesus, Paul recruited men to follow him, to see his ministry.

Finally, in Acts 20:25 – 35, Paul commits the ministry in Ephesus to the elders there, warning them about false teachers that will come both from in their midst, as well as from outside.  Peter shares the same warning in 2 Peter 2:1 – 3; 3:14 – 17.

What I am learning is that when men dig in on their own, then come together to share what they have found, richness emerges.  If you are not in a group like this, do whatever you have to, to find one.