Priority and Commitment
- Paul appears to be THE guy who couldn’t live at “the old missionary home.” If he were wheelchair-bound and weak, he would convince an attendant to push him somewhere!
- Paul’s track record is filled with nearly every variety of hardship possible in the first century, AND he kept going and going and going and . . . because he was the Lord’s doulos!
- Paul’s planning was not based upon what was easy or best for him; Paul’s planning was about what was best for the Gospel and for disciples.
- When Paul tells the Ephesian Elders, “not knowing what will happen to me” in Jerusalem, it was merely a statement of fact—exactly the same situation as his entire ministry.
- We must consider our own track record with the Lord. Does it demonstrate faithful service or the need for course correction? Based upon our own track records, what might our believing friends project as our future faithfulness?
- Conclusion: The “spiritual post-mortem” of our lives, our “spiritual autopsy,” will reveal what we prioritized and truly committed to during our physical life. That is quite true, and it also is quite tragic—our “spiritual autopsy” should not reveal what we prioritized, it should confirm what everyone already should have seen!
13 But we went ahead to the ship and set sail for Assos, intending from there to take Paul on board; for that was what he had arranged, intending himself to go by land. 14 And when he met us at Assos, we took him on board and came to Mitylene. 15 Sailing from there, we arrived the following day opposite Chios; and the next day we crossed over to Samos, and on the following day we came to Miletus. 16 For Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus so that he would not have to lose time in Asia; for he was hurrying, if it might be possible for him to be in Jerusalem the day of Pentecost. 17 From Miletus he sent word to Ephesus and called to himself the elders of the church. 18 And when they came to him, he said to them, “You yourselves know, from the first day that I set foot in Asia, how I was with you the whole time, 19 serving the Lord with all humility and with tears and trials which came upon me through the plots of the Jews; 20 how I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was beneficial, and teaching you publicly and from house to house, 21 solemnly testifying to both Jews and Greeks of repentance toward God and faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. 22 And now, behold, bound by the Spirit, I am on my way to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there, 23 except that the Holy Spirit solemnly testifies to me in every city, saying that chains and afflictions await me. 24 But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of God’s grace.-Acts 20:13-24