Search This Blog

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Day 327: Paul teaches in Greece

Paul shows his versatility.
Paul preaches about the true God
Acts 17:16-34
Paul goes to Corinth
Acts 18:1-11
Paul before Gallio
Acts 18:12-17
The first Thessalonian letter: Their faith, love and patience
1 Thessalonians 1:1-10
Paul’s integrity
1 Thessalonians 2:1-12
Their reception of Paul’s message
1 Thessalonians 2:13-20
Timothy is sent to encourage them
1 Thessalonians 3:1-8
Paul’s prayer
1 Thessalonians 3:9-13

In Athens, Paul speaks for the first time to people who have no conception of the Jewish faith. he starts from a very different place with them, and homes in very quickly on the resurrection of Jesus - the key piece of evidence that he’s not just peddling a fairy tale, but has something real to base his views on. Some listen, some scoff.
On to Corinth, where he makes a good start in building a church. Here we find out that Paul has a skill - he is a tentmaker, and he sets up shop with Aquila, who has the same trade, and supports himself financially until his friends catch up with him. Paul is no stranger to hard work. Unless he was in a ship, he was walking round Europe and Asia Minor. He spent all his energies preaching, and frequently his reward was nothing but violence.
But, unnoticed, Christian communities are springing up in the places where he has been. Even in Thessalonica, where the Jews were particularly brutal to wards him, we find out from his letter to them that they are carrying on their new found faith with loyalty and commitment. Paul takes great joy in them. And when Timothy catches up with Paul in Corinth, he has nothing but good news about how the little church is going. So Paul takes up his pen and writes to them with tender pride. So he prays for them: “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.  May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.”
Amen to that!

No comments:

Post a Comment