Thursday, April 18, 2013

Acts 16 - The Macedonian Vision

LINK: Acts 16

Maps by Gordon Smith can be used without further permission.

Paul's Second Missionary Journey (A.D. 50-52)

Paul stopped in Lystra (5) and wanted to take Timothy with him as he continued on his travels. Timothy was a spiritual "son" to Paul (1 Timothy 1:2).  They continued from town to town delivering the decrees of the Jerusalem Council (15:23-29) and strengthening the churches.

The Spirit of Jesus prevented the mission party from going to Asia Minor and Bithynia, but Paul had a vision telling him to come to Macedonia to help them. Macedonia was a Roman senatorial province and is in modern day northern Greece. The mission party of Paul, Silas, Timothy, and Luke (author of Acts) left immediately to go and preach the gospel. 

They went to a key city in Macedonia, Philippi (12), in modern day Kavalla. Philippi was founded by Philip, father of Alexander the Great. It was a Roman colony and military center. Paul preached the gospel there, and Lydia became the first convert in Europe! The beginnings of the church there caused persecution and imprisonment of Paul and Silas, leading to a miraculous earthquake opening the doors and eventual conversion of the jailer and his entire household (16:31-33).

Trivia: Paul's combined trips by land and sea ended up being the equivalent of 13,000 airline miles!

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Lord, help us to be sensitive to Your Spirit's call. We want to go where You want us to go and to do what You have for us to do. Show us the way. Amen. 
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