Monday, September 21, 2009

Last night in Acts...

Last night I had the opportunity to speak in church, taking one section in a teaching series on the book of Acts entitled, "How the Church Grows". I was asked to cover Acts 21:27-22:22, the arrest of Paul in Jerusalem and his defence. This was no easy matter - not least because Paul's suffering for the gospel isn't something I've experienced and so in a sense I was preaching 'above myself'.

A summary of the talk is in the diagram below which was my concluding slide. The emphases seem to be that (i) Paul was willing to suffer for the gospel - he went to Jerusalem knowing that persecution awaited him. (ii) He was willing to offend people, but only with the gospel because on all matters of culture, he fitted in with them as much as possible 'becoming like one under the law, in order to win those under the law'. (iii) His 'boldness' is matched with sensitivity to his audience, tailoring his talk to their understanding, and speaking with great respect and politeness.

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