This blog will include the sermons I have preached as a lay minister with the Anglican Parish of South Queens in the Diocese of NS and PEI in the Anglican Church of Canada. Because my preaching schedule varies, the frequency of postings will vary.
I hope that these sermons will enrich your spiritual life as much as they have enriched mine.
Sunday, 12 October 2014
Acts 26:24-27:8 The Storms of Life
events in Acts 26:24-27:8 occur just after Paul has been arrested for the last
time. He had an opportunity to speak to King Herod, King Agrippa and the Roman
governor Festus. Festus didn’t know anything about Moses and the prophets.
Agrippa and Herod, on the other hand, were familiar with Jewish traditions.
Agrippa did not oppose Paul’s words like Festus did. The resurrection took
place during the Passover, which was one of Judaism’s main festivals. Everyone
knew the story. Paul’s story of his own conversion would have been noticed by
was convicted of his sins but was not converted. He saw all of the evidence
that Paul presented, but he was not completely convinced to accept Christ as
his Saviour. Agrippa had no case against Christianity. He was reluctant to
accept Christ as his Saviour, just like some people today are reluctant to accept
Christ as their Saviour. Paul presented the offer of salvation to both Agrippa
and Festus just like he presented the offer of salvation to everyone he met. Christians
have two categories of sinners: saved and unsaved. God does not see rich people
or poor people. He doesn’t see rank or royalty.
Paul presented the offer of salvation, Agrippa and Festus discussed Paul’s
fate. They wanted to set Paul free, but Paul had already appealed to the
Emperor Caesar, which was his right as a Roman citizen. Because Paul appealed
to Caesar, there was no choice but to keep him custody and send him by ship to
Rome. Unfortunately, the ship set sail late in the season, which was the ideal
time for stormy weather, and as mentioned later on in Acts 27, the ship was
wrecked in a storm.
most logical course for the ship to take would have been to sail straight west
across the Mediterranean, but that wasn’t possible because of winds and storms.
Christianity is often the same. Sometimes we as Christians feel that we are
taking one step forward and two steps back, but God is always with. In
addition, God is good even when it seems to us that he is not good.
he stopped on the trip to Rome, Paul was greeted by many of the friends he
made. When Paul was saved, he gained Christian friends. Everywhere Paul went on
his many trips, he made many Christian friends. When we are saved, we gain
loyal Christian friends who will be with us when times are tough, just like
Paul had friends who cared for him and helped him. Doing things for people
makes friends, but allowing people to do things for us creates lasting
friendships like the friendships Paul had. Paul helped others, and in return
they helped him when he needed help.
key point in this story is God’s provision. He protected Paul so that Paul
could testify about his faith in Christ. He will also protect us when we
testify to others about our faith.
was excited about the new person that Christ made in him that he became a
life-changing agent in the lives of Festus, Agrippa, everyone he met and all of
Christianity. In fact, he was so excited that Festus thought he was insane!
When we are saved, we are also made into new people in Christ. Our excitement
about our new lives will also make us effective life-changing agents when we
share our testimony. The happier we are about what Christ is doing in us and
for us, the greater our passion to teach others about Christ will be.
enthusiasm will create a response, and it won’t always be positive. Regardless of
how impressive or unimpressive our educational background is, there will always
be people who will try to find ways to belittle our faith. We may face
persecution or ridicule for our faith, but when we do, God will be there to
protect us. When our basic purpose for living is to help others find the grace
that can set them free from sin, we become brave commentators like Paul was.
David: The Jeremiah Study Bible, NKJV (Nashville,
TN: Worthy Publishing, 2013)
Bible. Part of Wordsearch 10 Bible software package.
& Ogilvie, L.J.: The Preacher’s
Commentary Series, Vol. 28: Acts (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson Inc.; 1983)