From Jim McGuiggan... Creation and animal suffering

Creation and animal suffering

Petra wonders why God created the world so that animals have to suffer. We eat them, many of them eat each other, some of them are used for medical studies and some of them are butchered so that vain people can wear the exotic. And in the Old Testament we have the God-appointed sacrifice of animals.

As the biblical record presents it, in the beginning when God created humans and animals they ate vegetation and not each other (Genesis 1:29-30). It is only subsequent to our sinful rebellion that animals became a source of food for humans and (apparently) for one another (Genesis 9:3-6). I’m certain in light of that, as a beginning, and the development of the redemptive Story that we should view animal death as well as human death in connection with the arrival of sin and God's redeeming purpose. As Genesis 9:5 seems to imply, a tension is to be seen between the animal world and the humans.

I’m not suggesting that animals thoughtfully developed enmity against humans but I am suggesting that the peaceful relationship between them that’s reflected in Genesis 2:19-20 and 1:29-30 deteriorated. The mechanisms involved in that would be another discussion but I’m sure we should take the whole curse narrative of Genesis 3:14-19 into account and see it as the outworking of God’s will. That will is never to be separated from God’s redemptive purpose, which embraces the entire creation (see Romans 8:18-23). And if we hear the scriptures teach that God knew about our coming rebellion—as I’m sure he did—and that he prepared the creation for that eventuality this might ease our concerns about animals that are structured as carnivores. (They didn't grow flesh-tearing teeth after we sinned though the appetite may have arrived at that point.)

Whatever we are to make of the texts there are those (like Isaiah 11:6-9) that speak of peace in the animal world when the Messiah completes his glorious work of restructuring human society in justice, love and mercy. I think the least we should take from such texts is this: that the peace of the animal world was disrupted in light of sinful rebellion and spiritual anarchy. When all this is done away then the entire creation finds peace. So the texts as they sit present peace in the animal world arriving with the spiritual restructuring of the human world.

I believe there are aspects of the suffering of the animal world that serve the purposes of God by convicting us of our sin. I believe that the whole sacrificial system of the Old Testament, while it certainly runs deeper than this, sets before us the suffering of the innocent that sinful humans can be granted fellowship with the Holy Father. These sacrificial animals certainly shadow forth the coming of the Lamb of God but in themselves and their loss they bear witness to our sin and the depth of God’s love toward us. To puzzle over such questions is right and to refuse to settle for glib "explanations" is also right but what is not right is to forget that God looked at his entire creation and whispered, "Good!" Not a sparrow dies, said Jesus, but that the Holy Father doesn’t take note of it.

We usually speak as if Christ's work of reconciliation embraced only humans and it's perfectly right that we should do so. But Colossians 1:19-20 and other texts should remind us that the effect of Christ's work is cosmic.  

What is the “Fruit of the Vine”? by Kyle Butt, M.A.


What is the “Fruit of the Vine”?

by  Kyle Butt, M.A.

In the 21st century, scientific names and designations of certain fruits and vegetables often disagree with commonly accepted notions of the produce. For example, is a tomato a fruit or a vegetable? What about a cucumber? Although most people see these two foods as vegetables, technically they are viewed in scientific circles as fruit. Furthermore, both cucumbers and tomatoes grow on vines, which would, in the strictest sense of the word, classify them as “fruits of the vine.” Other fruits that grow on vines include melons, such as watermelon and cantaloupe, as well as grapes.
In light of the fact that there are many different “fruits of the vine,” how are we to understand the New Testament phrase, “the fruit of the vine,” that Jesus used during the Last Supper just before His death. Is it possible to identify which “fruit of the vine” was used to produce the drink of the last Supper? And if so, how does the identification of that specific fruit affect the observation of the Lord’s Supper today?
The phrase “the fruit of the vine” is used in only three places in the New Testament:
Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. But I say to you, I will not drink of this fruit of the vine from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom” (Matthew 26:27-29).
Then He took the cup, and when He had given thanks He gave it to them, and they all drank from it. And He said to them, “This is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many. Assuredly, I say to you, I will no longer drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God” (Mark 14:23-25).
Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and said, “Take this and divide it among yourselves; for I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine until the kingdom of God comes” (Luke 22:17-18).
In order to identify the specific “fruit of the vine” referred to by Jesus, we must analyze the words of the phrase in light of how the first-century audience would have understood them. The Greek word translated “vine” in these three instances is ampelos. Arndt, et al., define the term as “vine, or grapevine” (1979, p. 46). In virtually every instance in the Bible when the term is used, it refers to a grapevine. For instance, in James 3:12 several Bible translations render the word ampelos as “grapevine.” The New King James version reads: “Can a fig tree, my brethren, bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs?”. In Revelation 14:18, we read: “And another angel came out from the altar, which had power over fire; and cried with a loud cry to him that had the sharp sickle, saying, ‘Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.’” Notice that the term “vine” is used, then modified by the phrase “for her grapes...,” obviously referring to a grapevine.
Another Greek term relevant to this discussion is ampelōn, deriving from the same word as ampelos. Arndt, et al., give as its almost universal meaning, “vineyard” (p. 47). References in the New Testament using the term to denote a vineyard filled with grapes include Matthew 21:33-41, Mark 12:1-11, and Luke 20:9-16. In fact, the only reference in the New Testament where the term might mean anything other than a vineyard of grapes is Luke 13:6, where the term could possibly mean “orchard” (Arndt, et al., p. 47), specifically an orchard of figs. Since figs, however, are never referred to as the “fruit of the vine,” nor would a fig tree be classified as a vine, then this possible exception to the term “vineyard” has no bearing on the definition of the “fruit of the vine.”
Indeed, the terms “vine” and “vineyard” are so universally associated with grapes and wine made from grapes, that William Smith, under the entry for the word “vine,” wrote: “The vines of Palestine were celebrated both for luxuriant growth and for the immense clusters of grapes which they produced” (1870, 4:3446, emp. added). In Vine’s Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, W.E. Vine included the following statement with his definition of “wine”: “In instituting the Lord’s Supper He [Jesus—KB] speaks of the contents of the cup as the ‘fruit of the vine.’ So Mark 14:25” (1997, p. 1232). In The Expositor’s Greek Testament, A.B. Bruce summarized Jesus’ statement in Matthew 26:29 in the following words: “It is the last time I shall drink paschal...wine with you. I am to die at this Passover” (2002, 1:312).
It is an absolutely established fact that Jesus’ disciples, as well as the broader first-century readership of the gospel accounts, understood Jesus’ phrase “fruit of the vine” to refer to juice from grapes [NOTE: There is ongoing debate as to whether the grape juice was fermented or unfermented. For a brief, but trenchant discussion of this debate, see Jackson, 2000).
If Christians today want to follow the example that Jesus set during the Lord’s Supper, and the apostles followed throughout their ministry, then they will drink juice from grapes during their observance of the communion. Although we today might technically view products such as tomatoes, cucumbers, and melons as “fruits of the vine,” they were not referred to as such by Christ, the New Testament writers, or the greater Greek-speaking community at large during the time of Christ.


Arndt, William, F.W. Gingrich, and Frederick W. Danker (1979), A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press), second edition revised.
Bruce, A.B. (2002 reprint), The Expositor’s Greek Testament, ed. W. Robertson Nicoll (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson).
Jackson, Wayne (2000), “Was the ‘Fruit of the Vine’ Fermented?,” Christian Courier, [On-line], URL: http://www.christiancourier.com/articles/224-was-the-fruit-of-the- vine-fermented.
Smith, William (1870), Smith’s Dictionary of the Bible, ed. H.B. Hackett and Ezra Abbot (New York: Hurd & Houghton).
Vine, W.E. (1997), Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson).

From Mark Copeland... Paul Before Festus And Agrippa (Acts 25:1-27)

                          "THE BOOK OF ACTS"

               Paul Before Festus And Agrippa (25:1-27)


1. While Felix remained governor, Paul remained in Caesarea...
   a. Though he did enjoy some privileges - Ac 24:23
   b. But he was imprisoned for two years - Ac 24:27

2. Finally, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus... - Ac 24:27
   a. Who assumed the office by Nero's appointment in A.D. 60 - HIBD
   b. Who held the office until his death in A.D. 62 - ibid.
   c. Josephus describes Festus as prudent and honorable governor - ISBE,

[We catch a glimpse of Festus' character in his handling of Paul's case
inherited from Felix's own procrastination...]


      1. Shortly after arriving, Festus traveled from Caesarea to 
         Jerusalem - Ac 25:1
      2. The high priest and chief men informed Festus of Paul - Ac 25:2
      3. They petitioned him to bring Paul back to Jerusalem - Ac 25:2-3
      4. Meanwhile the Jews plotted to ambush and kill Paul - Ac 25:3
      5. Festus answered that Paul should be kept in Caesarea - Ac 25:4
      6. He invited the Jews in authority to Caesarea to accuse Paul
         there - Ac 25:5

      1. After ten days in Jerusalem, Festus returned to Caesarea - Ac 25:6
      2. The next day he commanded Paul brought before the judgment seat
         - Ac 25:6
      3. The Jews from Jerusalem laid serious but unproved complaints
         against Paul - Ac 25:7
      4. Paul replied, "Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against
         the temple, nor against Caesar have I offended in anything at 
         all." - Ac 25:8

      1. Festus asked Paul if he would go to Jerusalem with him - Ac 25:9
         a. Festus wanted to do the Jews a favor
         b. He suggested that he would judge Paul there
      2. Paul objected to being taken to Jerusalem - Ac 25:10-11
         a. He stood at Caesar's judgment seat where he ought to be 
         b. He had done no wrong to the Jews, as Festus knew
         c. Paul was willing to die if he had committed anything worthy
            of death
         d. But there was nothing in the charges of which he was accused
      3. Paul therefore appealed to Caesar - Ac 25:11-12
         a. As a Roman citizen he had the right to appeal his case before
            Caesar - ESVSB
         b. Caesar at that time was the emperor Nero - ibid.

[Conferring with his council Festus answered, "You have appealed to
Caesar? To Caesar you shall go!" (Ac 25:12).  Before sending Paul to
the Roman Caesar, Festus took advantage of a visit by a Jewish king...]


      1. After some days, King Agrippa and Bernice came to Caesarea to 
         greet Festus - Ac 25:13
         a. Agrippa was Agrippa II - HIBD
            1) Son of Herod Agrippa I, who killed James - Ac 12:1
            2) Great-grandson of Herod the Great, who killed the babies
               - Mt 2:1-18
         b. Bernice was the half-sister of Agrippa - AYBD
            1) She married Marcus Julius Alexander in A.D. 41
            2) After Marcus' death, she married her uncle Herod of 
               Chalchis in A.D. 44
            3) After Herod died in A.D. 48, she became Agrippa's constant
               companion (some think it was an incestuous relationship)
            4) Because of such regarding her brother, she eventually
               married Polemo king of Cilicia
            5) She finally became the mistress of the Roman emperor Titus 2.

            Festus laid Paul's case before Agrippa - Ac 25:14-21
         a. He noted that Felix had left Paul a prisoner
         b. The chief priests and elders of the Jews informed Festus
            about Paul
         c. He told the Jews that it was not Roman custom to deliver the
            accused for "destruction" without the accused having the 
            opportunity to answer the charges
         d. Festus had Paul come before the judgment seat
         e. Festus discovered nothing wrong, other than there were
            questions about "their own religion and about a certain 
            Jesus, who had died, whom Paul affirmed to be alive"
         f. Festus asked Paul to go to Jerusalem, since he was uncertain
            about these matters
         g. Paul then appealed to Caesar
      3. Agrippa wanted to hear Paul, and Festus promised a hearing the
         next day - Ac 25:22

      1. The next day Festus commanded Paul brought forth - Ac 25:23
         a. Following the arrival of Agrippa and Bernice with great pomp
         b. Before an audience of commanders and prominent men of the 
      2. Festus explained the situation to Agrippa and the men gathered
         - Ac 25:24-27
         a. In Jerusalem and Caesarea the Jews claimed Paul was not "fit
            to live any longer"
         b. Festus had found that Paul committed nothing deserving death
         c. Paul had appealed to Caesar, and Festus was going to send him
         d. But he had nothing to write to Caesar about Paul
         e. He hoped after Agrippa's examination of Paul, he may have
            something to write
         f. For he thought it unreasonable to send a prisoner to Caesar
            without specifying charges


1. At this point, King Agrippa permitted Paul to speak for himself...
   a. Paul's defense before Agrippa is covered in the next chapter - Ac 26:1-32
   b. Which we shall consider in our next study

2. Luke detailed account of these events may have been for a particular
   a. There is good reason to believe that Theophilus was a Roman 
      official - Lk 2:1-4; Ac 1:1
   b. Some suggest Theophilus may have been in charge of Paul's case at
   c. Which might be why the book of Acts ends so abruptly with Paul
      awaiting trial - Ac 28:30-31
   d. With such detailed accounts of Paul's trials, it may have helped
      Paul's release after his first imprisonment in Rome

Of course, with the Holy Spirit inspiring Luke and preserving his two
books for our benefit, we can see the providence of God at work as
Jesus' promises regarding Paul are fulfilled...

   "...he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles,
   kings, and the children of Israel."
                                                           - Ac 9:15

   "But the following night the Lord stood by him and said, "Be of
   good cheer, Paul; for as you have testified for Me in Jerusalem,
   so you must also bear witness at Rome."
                                                           - Ac 23:11

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2013

From Gary... Bible Reading July 30

Bible Reading  

July 30

The World English Bible

July 30
2 Chronicles 22-24

2Ch 22:1 The inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son king in his place; for the band of men who came with the Arabians to the camp had slain all the eldest. So Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah reigned.
2Ch 22:2 Forty-two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign; and he reigned one year in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Athaliah the daughter of Omri.
2Ch 22:3 He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab; for his mother was his counselor to do wickedly.
2Ch 22:4 He did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, as did the house of Ahab; for they were his counselors after the death of his father, to his destruction.
2Ch 22:5 He walked also after their counsel, and went with Jehoram the son of Ahab king of Israel to war against Hazael king of Syria at Ramoth Gilead: and the Syrians wounded Joram.
2Ch 22:6 He returned to be healed in Jezreel of the wounds which they had given him at Ramah, when he fought against Hazael king of Syria. Azariah the son of Jehoram king of Judah went down to see Jehoram the son of Ahab in Jezreel, because he was sick.
2Ch 22:7 Now the destruction of Ahaziah was of God, in that he went to Joram: for when he was come, he went out with Jehoram against Jehu the son of Nimshi, whom Yahweh had anointed to cut off the house of Ahab.
2Ch 22:8 It happened, when Jehu was executing judgment on the house of Ahab, that he found the princes of Judah, and the sons of the brothers of Ahaziah, ministering to Ahaziah, and killed them.
2Ch 22:9 He sought Ahaziah, and they caught him (now he was hiding in Samaria), and they brought him to Jehu, and killed him; and they buried him, for they said, He is the son of Jehoshaphat, who sought Yahweh with all his heart. The house of Ahaziah had no power to hold the kingdom.
2Ch 22:10 Now when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal seed of the house of Judah.
2Ch 22:11 But Jehoshabeath, the daughter of the king, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king's sons who were slain, and put him and his nurse in the bedchamber. So Jehoshabeath, the daughter of king Jehoram, the wife of Jehoiada the priest (for she was the sister of Ahaziah), hid him from Athaliah, so that she didn't kill him.
2Ch 22:12 He was with them hid in the house of God six years: and Athaliah reigned over the land.
2Ch 23:1 In the seventh year Jehoiada strengthened himself, and took the captains of hundreds, Azariah the son of Jeroham, and Ishmael the son of Jehohanan, and Azariah the son of Obed, and Maaseiah the son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat the son of Zichri, into covenant with him.
2Ch 23:2 They went about in Judah, and gathered the Levites out of all the cities of Judah, and the heads of fathers' houses of Israel, and they came to Jerusalem.
2Ch 23:3 All the assembly made a covenant with the king in the house of God. He said to them, Behold, the king's son shall reign, as Yahweh has spoken concerning the sons of David.
2Ch 23:4 This is the thing that you shall do: a third part of you, who come in on the Sabbath, of the priests and of the Levites, shall be porters of the thresholds;
2Ch 23:5 and a third part shall be at the king's house; and a third part at the gate of the foundation: and all the people shall be in the courts of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:6 But let none come into the house of Yahweh, save the priests, and those who minister of the Levites; they shall come in, for they are holy: but all the people shall keep the instruction of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:7 The Levites shall surround the king, every man with his weapons in his hand; and whoever comes into the house, let him be slain: and be with the king when he comes in, and when he goes out.
2Ch 23:8 So the Levites and all Judah did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded: and they took every man his men, those who were to come in on the Sabbath; with those who were to go out on the Sabbath; for Jehoiada the priest didn't dismiss the shift.
2Ch 23:9 Jehoiada the priest delivered to the captains of hundreds the spears, and bucklers, and shields, that had been king David's, which were in the house of God.
2Ch 23:10 He set all the people, every man with his weapon in his hand, from the right side of the house to the left side of the house, along by the altar and the house, around the king.
2Ch 23:11 Then they brought out the king's son, and put the crown on him, and gave him the testimony, and made him king: and Jehoiada and his sons anointed him; and they said, Long live the king.
2Ch 23:12 When Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the king, she came to the people into the house of Yahweh:
2Ch 23:13 and she looked, and, behold, the king stood by his pillar at the entrance, and the captains and the trumpets by the king; and all the people of the land rejoiced, and blew trumpets; the singers also played on instruments of music, and led the singing of praise. Then Athaliah tore her clothes, and said, Treason! treason!
2Ch 23:14 Jehoiada the priest brought out the captains of hundreds who were set over the army, and said to them, Have her forth between the ranks; and whoever follows her, let him be slain with the sword: for the priest said, Don't kill her in the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:15 So they made way for her; and she went to the entrance of the horse gate to the king's house: and they killed her there.
2Ch 23:16 Jehoiada made a covenant between himself, and all the people, and the king, that they should be Yahweh's people.
2Ch 23:17 All the people went to the house of Baal, and broke it down, and broke his altars and his images in pieces, and killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars.
2Ch 23:18 Jehoiada appointed the officers of the house of Yahweh under the hand of the priests the Levites, whom David had distributed in the house of Yahweh, to offer the burnt offerings of Yahweh, as it is written in the law of Moses, with rejoicing and with singing, according to the order of David.
2Ch 23:19 He set the porters at the gates of the house of Yahweh, that no one who was unclean in anything should enter in.
2Ch 23:20 He took the captains of hundreds, and the nobles, and the governors of the people, and all the people of the land, and brought down the king from the house of Yahweh: and they came through the upper gate to the king's house, and set the king on the throne of the kingdom.
2Ch 23:21 So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet. Athaliah they had slain with the sword.
2Ch 24:1 Joash was seven years old when he began to reign; and he reigned forty years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Zibiah, of Beersheba.
2Ch 24:2 Joash did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh all the days of Jehoiada the priest.
2Ch 24:3 Jehoiada took for him two wives; and he became the father of sons and daughters.
2Ch 24:4 It happened after this, that Joash was minded to restore the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:5 He gathered together the priests and the Levites, and said to them, Go out to the cities of Judah, and gather of all Israel money to repair the house of your God from year to year; and see that you hasten the matter. However the Levites didn't hurry.
2Ch 24:6 The king called for Jehoiada the chief, and said to him, Why haven't you required of the Levites to bring in out of Judah and out of Jerusalem the tax of Moses the servant of Yahweh, and of the assembly of Israel, for the tent of the testimony?
2Ch 24:7 For the sons of Athaliah, that wicked woman, had broken up the house of God; and also all the dedicated things of the house of Yahweh did they bestow on the Baals.
2Ch 24:8 So the king commanded, and they made a chest, and set it outside at the gate of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:9 They made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in for Yahweh the tax that Moses the servant of God laid on Israel in the wilderness.
2Ch 24:10 All the princes and all the people rejoiced, and brought in, and cast into the chest, until they had made an end.
2Ch 24:11 It was so, that whenever the chest was brought to the king's officers by the hand of the Levites, and when they saw that there was much money, the king's scribe and the chief priest's officer came and emptied the chest, and took it, and carried it to its place again. Thus they did day by day, and gathered money in abundance.
2Ch 24:12 The king and Jehoiada gave it to such as did the work of the service of the house of Yahweh; and they hired masons and carpenters to restore the house of Yahweh, and also such as worked iron and brass to repair the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:13 So the workmen worked, and the work of repairing went forward in their hands, and they set up the house of God in its state, and strengthened it.
2Ch 24:14 When they had made an end, they brought the rest of the money before the king and Jehoiada, of which were made vessels for the house of Yahweh, even vessels with which to minister and to offer, and spoons, and vessels of gold and silver. They offered burnt offerings in the house of Yahweh continually all the days of Jehoiada.
2Ch 24:15 But Jehoiada grew old and was full of days, and he died; one hundred thirty years old was he when he died.
2Ch 24:16 They buried him in the city of David among the kings, because he had done good in Israel, and toward God and his house.
2Ch 24:17 Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king listened to them.
2Ch 24:18 They forsook the house of Yahweh, the God of their fathers, and served the Asherim and the idols: and wrath came on Judah and Jerusalem for this their guiltiness.
2Ch 24:19 Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again to Yahweh; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear.
2Ch 24:20 The Spirit of God came on Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest; and he stood above the people, and said to them, Thus says God, Why do you disobey the commandments of Yahweh, so that you can't prosper? because you have forsaken Yahweh, he has also forsaken you.
2Ch 24:21 They conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:22 Thus Joash the king didn't remember the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but killed his son. When he died, he said, Yahweh look on it, and require it.
2Ch 24:23 It happened at the end of the year, that the army of the Syrians came up against him: and they came to Judah and Jerusalem, and destroyed all the princes of the people from among the people, and sent all the spoil of them to the king of Damascus.
2Ch 24:24 For the army of the Syrians came with a small company of men; and Yahweh delivered a very great army into their hand, because they had forsaken Yahweh, the God of their fathers. So they executed judgment on Joash.
2Ch 24:25 When they were departed for him (for they left him very sick), his own servants conspired against him for the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest, and killed him on his bed, and he died; and they buried him in the city of David, but they didn't bury him in the tombs of the kings.
2Ch 24:26 These are those who conspired against him: Zabad the son of Shimeath the Ammonitess, and Jehozabad the son of Shimrith the Moabitess.
2Ch 24:27 Now concerning his sons, and the greatness of the burdens laid on him, and the rebuilding of the house of God, behold, they are written in the commentary of the book of the kings. Amaziah his son reigned in his place.
Jul. 30, 31
Acts 18

Act 18:1 After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth.
Act 18:2 He found a certain Jew named Aquila, a man of Pontus by race, who had recently come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to depart from Rome. He came to them,
Act 18:3 and because he practiced the same trade, he lived with them and worked, for by trade they were tent makers.
Act 18:4 He reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded Jews and Greeks.
Act 18:5 But when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul was compelled by the Spirit, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ.
Act 18:6 When they opposed him and blasphemed, he shook out his clothing and said to them, "Your blood be on your own heads! I am clean. From now on, I will go to the Gentiles!"
Act 18:7 He departed there, and went into the house of a certain man named Justus, one who worshiped God, whose house was next door to the synagogue.
Act 18:8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord with all his house. Many of the Corinthians, when they heard, believed and were baptized.
Act 18:9 The Lord said to Paul in the night by a vision, "Don't be afraid, but speak and don't be silent;
Act 18:10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many people in this city."
Act 18:11 He lived there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
Act 18:12 But when Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews with one accord rose up against Paul and brought him before the judgment seat,
Act 18:13 saying, "This man persuades men to worship God contrary to the law."
Act 18:14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, "If indeed it were a matter of wrong or of wicked crime, you Jews, it would be reasonable that I should bear with you;
Act 18:15 but if they are questions about words and names and your own law, look to it yourselves. For I don't want to be a judge of these matters."
Act 18:16 He drove them from the judgment seat.
Act 18:17 Then all the Greeks laid hold on Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. Gallio didn't care about any of these things.
Act 18:18 Paul, having stayed after this many more days, took his leave of the brothers, and sailed from there for Syria, together with Priscilla and Aquila. He shaved his head in Cenchreae, for he had a vow.
Act 18:19 He came to Ephesus, and he left them there; but he himself entered into the synagogue, and reasoned with the Jews.
Act 18:20 When they asked him to stay with them a longer time, he declined;
Act 18:21 but taking his leave of them, and saying, "I must by all means keep this coming feast in Jerusalem, but I will return again to you if God wills," he set sail from Ephesus.
Act 18:22 When he had landed at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the assembly, and went down to Antioch.
Act 18:23 Having spent some time there, he departed, and went through the region of Galatia, and Phrygia, in order, establishing all the disciples.
Act 18:24 Now a certain Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by race, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus. He was mighty in the Scriptures.
Act 18:25 This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, although he knew only the baptism of John.
Act 18:26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside, and explained to him the way of God more accurately.
Act 18:27 When he had determined to pass over into Achaia, the brothers encouraged him, and wrote to the disciples to receive him. When he had come, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace;
Act 18:28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews, publicly showing by the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ.


From Gary.... When your world is all shook up

Acts 16:22-26 NASB
(22)  The crowd rose up together against them, and the chief magistrates tore their robes off them and proceeded to order them to be beaten with rods.
(23)  When they had struck them with many blows, they threw them into prison, commanding the jailer to guard them securely;
(24)  and he, having received such a command, threw them into the inner prison and fastened their feet in the stocks.
(25)  But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns of praise to God, and the prisoners were listening to them;
(26)  and suddenly there came a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison house were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone's chains were unfastened.

Some things are hard for me to understand. It took decades for me to adopt the attitude that Snoopy so gleefully espouses.  Even when my day is difficult, I try to keep a good attitude. However, I have not yet arrived to the level of Paul and Silas.  Imagine, being beaten with rods, imprisoned and chained for what you believe- and then being able to sing praises to God (even at midnight).  Yet, things like this are happening in our world, even now!!!  The thing is- most of the time you get shook up by the events of the day and the earth does not.  I wonder if I will ever have such faith in the face of adversity? And how would my life be changed by God's response to such a faith? I guess I will just have to play wait and see!!!  Its all about one's heart toward God, isn't it???? May God give us all the faith to face whatever the future may hold!!!!