Bound by the Hope of Israel!
Scripture reading for June 12th: Acts 28
By following Paul’s Spirit-directed instructions, all aboard the ship reached the island safely but the ship was demolished. God cares about all men, desiring their salvation!
During the next three months, Paul ministered to the Roman official in charge of the island by praying for his father. God healed him and then many other sick from the island were also healed through Paul’s ministry. The Gospel was preached by Paul and God’s compassion for the lost there was demonstrated through his ministry of healing. God used the journey of Paul as a prisoner to take him where He wanted him to go and minister to the people He had set before him. God used the Roman centurion to protect Paul and the Roman government to pay for the voyage and Paul’s room and board!
After the three months of wintering there, Paul and the prisoners boarded an Alexandrian ship that was marked by the figure of the Greek gods Castor and Pollux. Paul did not refuse to go because of this! He arrived in Rome, explaining to the brothers how God had brought him to Rome: “For this reason I have asked to see you and talk with you. It is because of the Hope of Israel that I am bound with this chain.” (Acts 28:20)
The Book of Acts ends with Paul as a prisoner in Rome. He was placed there by God’s direction to minister to those God would open doors for. For two years, Paul was under a form of house arrest and from there he wrote many of the letters of the New Testament to the churches he had helped to found as a missionary. “Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ.” (Acts 28:31)