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  • Life that Defends the Resurrection of Jesus

    찬송 : 찬송가 256장 (새찬송가 515장)

  • 2024-06-25   [사도행전(Acts) 26:1 - 26:18]


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  • 1 So Agrippa said to Paul, "You have permission to speak for yourself." Then Paul stretched out his hand and made his defense:
    2 "I consider myself fortunate that it is before you, King Agrippa, I am going to make my defense today against all the accusations of the Jews,
    3 especially because you are familiar with all the customs and controversies of the Jews. Therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently.
    4 "My manner of life from my youth, spent from the beginning among my own nation and in Jerusalem, is known by all the Jews.
    5 They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee.
    6 And now I stand here on trial because of my hope in the promise made by God to our fathers,
    7 to which our twelve tribes hope to attain, as they earnestly worship night and day. And for this hope I am accused by Jews, O king!
    8 Why is it thought incredible by any of you that God raises the dead?
    9 "I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things in opposing the name of Jesus of Nazareth.
    10 And I did so in Jerusalem. I not only locked up many of the saints in prison after receiving authority from the chief priests, but when they were put to death I cast my vote against them.
    11 And I punished them often in all the synagogues and tried to make them blaspheme, and in raging fury against them I persecuted them even to foreign cities.
    12 "In this connection I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests.
    13 At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me.
    14 And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, 'Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.'
    15 And I said, 'Who are you, Lord?' And the Lord said, 'I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.
    16 But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you,
    17 delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles--to whom I am sending you
    18 to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.'
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Thinking & Understanding
Paul started appealing his innocence to King Agrippa. Paul confessed that he himself, who had been a follower of Judaism, used to be convinced that Christianity was a cult and had persecuted and killed Christians (vv. 1-11). He had chased Christians down to the region of Damascus, and Jesus had appeared to Paul there. Jesus also had transformed Paul from a worker for Judaism who persecuted the gospel to a worker for the gospel who was persecuted by the Jews (vv. 12-18).

Who is God?
Vv. 16-18 Jesus sends out those who are saved as witnesses. The Lord shone His light on Paul then sent him out as a witness to make people come out to the light and become the holy people of heaven, governed by God. The Lord has saved you and is sending you out as His witness, too. To whom are you a witness of the gospel, and who are you leading into the light?

What lesson is God teaching me?
Vv. 8-12 Paul revealed the mistakes of his past without hiding them in order to testify about the Lord of the resurrection. Although it was a dark past that he would rather hide, he confessed the process of his conversion in great detail. Paul testified that the reason why he had been transformed from being the leader of persecution who opposed the name of Jesus to a witness who spread the name of Jesus was because he had encountered the resurrected Jesus. What is a vivid testimony from your life that you can tell people which bears witness to the gospel of life?

Prayer
Lord of hope, may I preach about you boldly each day, following the calling you have given me.