Finished Acts this morning
- 17.16 says that Paul was disturbed in his spirit by the idols which he saw. I think this challenged me because frankly I think I’m quite dismissive around places of worship which don’t orientate towards Jesus. I don’t pay them too much mind, maybe just accept that they are there. But Paul was disturbed by it, and later in Chapter 17 he does something about it. I’m not too sure what this looks like for me, only that I want to be asking that my spirit is disturbed when I see worship that isn’t going to Jesus. Even in my own life, when I idolize money or lesiure time etc, may I be disturbed by my idolatry.
- 18.18 Paul cuts his hair because he makes a vow. I recently got my hair cut and I really like the feeling of feeling somewhat like a new man afterwards. Apart from this, I think what I saw in this passage is the connection between head knowledge and physical motions. I think often my faith resides in my head, and isn’t experienced in my Body. Here Paul takes a deliberate step to connect the mind and body. I guess I think it’s similar to raising your hands in worship or bowing down, taking communion or fasting. These are physical acts which demonstrate something within. ALSO, something (sorry to drag this small verse out), which I think strikes me is how the haircut is almost like a reminder of the new commitment. I’m a big fan of reminders in scripture and in my own walk with God, reminding me what God has done for me and where He has brought me from.
- This isn’t so much a specific verse, but it strikes me that when Saul becomes a Christian he’s given a name change. However most of the book of Acts seems to refer to him as Saul still. Whilst in the letters later on in the new testament he uses Paul. I’m reading into it, but I think this is partly because adjusting to a new name takes time. Just like adjusting to our new identity in Christ: forgiven, righteous etc. I think often I reckon God should just zap me and make me perfect, but the change which has happened in me as I’ve become a new creation takes time to be realised. So I still struggle with pride and sin, even though I am dead to sin.