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Acts Reading Plan | Week 17 | Day 3
Take a moment to be silent and still. In order to be fully present in body and mind, take a deep breath in and let it out slowly. Do this three times.
Bible Reading: Acts 26:1-8
Read these verses three times slowly.
Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.”
So Paul motioned with his hand and began his defense: “King Agrippa, I consider myself fortunate to stand before you today as I make my defense against all the accusations of the Jews, and especially so because you are well acquainted with all the Jewish customs and controversies. Therefore, I beg you to listen to me patiently.
“The Jewish people all know the way I have lived ever since I was a child, from the beginning of my life in my own country, and also in Jerusalem. They have known me for a long time and can testify, if they are willing, that I conformed to the strictest sect of our religion, living as a Pharisee. And now it is because of my hope in what God has promised our ancestors that I am on trial today. This is the promise our twelve tribes are hoping to see fulfilled as they earnestly serve God day and night. King Agrippa, it is because of this hope that these Jews are accusing me. Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?
Reflection & Questions
Today’s reading continues with Paul being able to defend himself before the Roman leadership – this time to a king. But he doesn’t just talk about himself. That would be anathema to Paul. His life is about Jesus, and so he seizes every opportunity, whether on street corners, or before Kings, to talk about how Jesus has changed his life.
We will be looking at this conversation with King Agrippa for the next three days, but as he begins his presentation, Paul wants to make it clear that “it is because of [his] hope in what God has promised…that I am on trial today.” Hope in what? The resurrection! The Jews were rejecting Paul’s teaching about resurrection. But as Paul so concisely says, “Why should any of you consider it incredible that God raises the dead?” If He’s God, why would that be a problem?!
As with yesterday’s reading, before we look down on the Jews for their lack of faith in God’s power, consider your own faith this week. Are you facing situations where you doubt God’s power? Does your faith give you the confidence that God is at work even if things don’t work out the way you hope? If God is God we should not consider anything beyond him. We are human, and we fear, doubt and wrestle for sure. But the underlying tone of our faith can be that He is faithful and nothing is impossible for Him.
- Is there a situation in your life where you are struggling with fear or doubt? Be honest with God about that. Come to him as you are, not as you feel you should be, but also listen for how His Spirit is guiding you in this situation.
Talk to God in response to today’s reading.
You might use this song today to worship Jesus today:
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