Paul Goes through Macedonia
1When the riot was over, Paul sent for the followers and encouraged them. He then told them goodbye and left for Macedonia. 2As he traveled from place to place, he encouraged the followers with many messages. Finally, he went to Greece 3and stayed there for three months.
Paul was about to sail to Syria. But some of the Jewish leaders plotted against him, so he decided to return by way of Macedonia. 4With him were Sopater, son of Pyrrhus from Berea, and Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica. Gaius from Derbe was also with him, and so were Timothy and the two Asians, Tychicus and Trophimus. 5They went on ahead to Troas and waited for us there. 6After the Festival of Thin Bread, we sailed from Philippi. Five days later we met them in Troas and stayed there for a week.
Paul's Last Visit to Troas
7On the first day of the week we met to break bread together. Paul spoke to the people until midnight because he was leaving the next morning. 8In the upstairs room where we were meeting, there were a lot of lamps. 9A young man by the name of Eutychus was sitting on a window sill. While Paul was speaking, the young man got very sleepy. Finally, he went to sleep and fell three floors all the way down to the ground. When they picked him up, he was dead.
10Paul went down and bent over Eutychus. He took him in his arms and said, “Don't worry! He's alive.” 11After Paul had gone back upstairs, he broke bread, and ate with us. He then spoke until dawn and left. 12Then the followers took the young man home alive and were very happy.
In today’s reading we get a glimpse of what Paul’s missionary life was like. He has just left a riot in Ephesus, caused because his message about Christ was bad for the silver-smiths’ idol business. Only his Christian friends prevented him from being lynched by the mob. After a tour through Macedonia (Northern Greece), he returned to Greece, only to change his plans three months later when he uncovered a plot on his life. Instead of sailing to Syria he took the land route and came to Troas. Imagine the stress!
He had so much to share with the people at Troas that he went on talking until midnight, at which point Eutychus fell asleep and fell out of a third storey window. After taking care of him, they continued talking and eating bread until daybreak.
We read in 2 Corinthians 11:27 how he “worked and struggled and spent many sleepless nights.” This passage in Acts fleshes out those words.
Paul used what was available to him to spread the good news of Jesus. He used shipping lanes, wrote letters, walked, rode a horse or donkey. We live in a different culture and time from Paul, and we can be grateful that in the West, at least, we do not suffer like he did.
There are so many ways to let our light shine: Facebook, Twitter, emails, Snapchat,
Skype, LinkedIn etc., not to mention face to face encounters and discussions with our friends. God has given each of us talents and spiritual gifts to use for his glory.
Paul’s life was centered around spreading the Word of God to all people. Use the gifts and talents that God has given you and whatever technology you have to let others know about the love of God. Let your light shine.
Written by Rob Longley and Annabel Robinson.
Lord Jesus, you are the Light of the world. Use me as a vessel to shine your light so that those I come in contact with will know who you are. Use me, I pray, for your glory. It is in your name I pray, Amen.