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Paul’s Vision of the Man of Macedonia September 17, 2016

Posted by flashbuzzer in Books, Christianity.
Tags: , , , ,

Here are my thoughts on Acts 16:6-10.

Summary: In this passage, Paul and his companions traveled through Phrygia and Galatia, eventually reaching Troas. The Lord had kept them from preaching the Gospel message in Asia, Bithynia and Mysia – yet He then used a vision to command them to go to Macedonia.

Thoughts: Here, we see that the Lord limited Paul’s missionary aspirations. Calvin offers some thoughts on this point in his commentary on verse 6:

Therefore, there is nothing better than to leave God the freedom and power to give or withhold his grace as he pleases. Just as his eternal election is free, so is his calling that comes from it; it is not based on men, since it owes nothing to anyone. So we must recognize that the Gospel springs only from grace. God does not lack good reason for offering his Gospel to some and passing others by; but that reason lies hidden.

This passage reminded me of a trying experience; in particular, I had volunteered to serve as a co-leader on a short-term missions trip. I had been fairly excited about the opportunity to serve a local community and mentor some students in the process. Yet I was beset by some professional and personal issues that eventually compelled me to withdraw from that position. In retrospect, I could see God at work in those circumstances, as the missions team was able to flourish in my absence. Now a critical distinction between my experience and Paul’s experience in this passage is that I did not preach the Gospel to a second group of non-believers at that time. Clearly God was working through Paul and his companions to maintain their focus on missions even during his trying circumstances, and I would do well to emulate them in that regard in the future.



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