Acts chapter 20 - A Short Eventful Visit

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The start of another chapter today and we have reached chapter 20.

We actually need to go back just for a few verse of chapter 19 first because it continues straight into chapter 20.

We last looked at the verse up to 28 and left off just as the riot in Ephesus was starting

These people involved in the complaint about Paul and the harm his words could bring to their businesses around the idols were Gentiles.

In verse 29 we see how bad it got and the risk it was to Paul's safety.

29 So the whole city was filled with confusion, and rushed into the theatre with one accord, having seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Macedonians, Paul’s travel companions. 30 And when Paul wanted to go in to the people, the disciples would not allow him. 

2 of the disciples were caught by the crowd.
The other disciples kept Paul away from the danger that was recognised and then another person called Alexander is the one to have enough influence to calm the crowd.

Alexander was representing the Jews because this riot may have got so out of hand that it would have ended up not just the Silversmiths etc. against Paul and the other believers but between the Jews and the Gentiles.

His advice was simply  -  do not cause trouble here in the streets but if any of you have a lawful greivance then take it to the courts.

So now into chapter 20

verses 1 - 6

As soon as the he could Paul left and travelled to Macedonia and then on to Greece for 3 months.

After that he intended to go to Syria but the Jews were plotting against him so he decided to go through Macedonia instead headed for Troas

Who went with him?

Well some people went ahead of him and some travelled with him

 And Sopater of Berea accompanied him to Asia—also Aristarchus and Secundus of the Thessalonians, and Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia. These men, going ahead, waited for us at Troas.

and some travelled with him

But we sailed away from Philippi after the Days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days joined them at Troas, where we stayed seven days.

Timothy was named in the former group and from the use of the word "us" in the latter group we know it included Luke.

Also an indication again about how how the number of disciples learning from Paul was growing all the time.

verses 7 - 12

While at Troas we get the miracle that is well-known about the boy falling out of the window.

Luke sets the scene here so that we know the poor boy had been there a long time and that it was now evening time by the words of verse 8

There were many lamps in the upper room where they were gathered together. 

He certainly would not have wasted words mentioning lamps if he did not mean to let us know that those lamps were being used.

I have been in long meetings in the past and they are always for a specific reason and that is to hear as much as you can about the Word of God from someone you respect.

These days we complain if the speaker goes over 20 mins in a Sunday morning worship service but when there are times of teaching we do expect longer sessions but not as long as this meeting in Troas.

I also have known of people to fall asleep in short meetings even when they have been trying hard to listen so I have no trouble in picturing this scene and also do not blame the young man for being so tired or Paul for preaching so long.

But I have never been in a meeting where someone has died.

This is something that must have brought such distress and shock to the crowd in the room.

God however had something else planned and that was to show His miraculous power over death.

Some people may have said Paul put him to sleep but God used Paul to bring him back to life.

Another instance where there was great rejoicing.

12 And they brought the young man in alive, and they were not a little comforted.

Some people may have said Paul put him to sleep but God used Paul to bring him back to life.

Interested to know more about the Book of Acts?
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