“When I returned to Jerusalem and was praying at the temple, I fell into a trance and saw the Lord speaking. ‘Quick!’ he said to me. ‘Leave Jerusalem immediately, because they will not accept your testimony about me. ‘Lord,’ I replied, ‘these men know that I went from one synagogue to another to imprison and beat those who believe in you. And when the blood of your martyr Stephen was shed, I stood there giving my approval and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him.’ Then the Lord said to me, ‘Go; I will send you far away to the Gentiles.’ ” (Acts 22:17-21 NIV84)

In these verses, Paul is recalling a conversation he had with the Lord about his future ministry to the Gentiles (non Jews). God was telling Paul that he needed to flee Jerusalem and begin a ministry to the Gentile world. Paul is letting the Lord know that didn’t make much sense to him. Paul is trying to tell God that from his perspective he made the perfect evangelist to the Jewish world. He was a Jewish scholar, a strict Pharisee, a student of Gamaliel, a persecutor of the Christian faith, and now a recent convert. Who better, according to Paul, to help fellow Jews along the same spiritual path he had taken. I have to admit, what Paul proposes seems logical to me. Put the other way, I would have trouble arguing that Paul would make a good evangelist to the Gentile world. But thanks be to God that He doesn’t work from the perspective of human logic. God knew that Paul would not have survived long enough to be an evangelist to the Jewish people (Note: just before our verses for today the Jews were trying to kill him). God also knew that He had specifically gifted Paul to bring the Biblical truths of God’s Word to a people who didn’t even know what the Bible was.

The same is true for our lives as well. We need to more often conclude our prayers with, ” not my will, but Thine be done!” God knows better than we do. His sight is not limited to today. He sees throughout all eternity and knows what is best for us and what is best for His kingdom. We need to trust His logic as flawless even when ours looks, well, logical. This is why it is so important for us to be in God’s Word. We need to continuously be bombarded with the spiritual truth that God knows what’s best.

Peace!

Pastor Tom

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