Paul encourages the believers in Macedonia and Greece. He delivers a very lengthy sermon in Troas. He visits the elders in Ephesus. [UPDATED]
VERSE 1. After the uproar had ceased, Paul sent for the disciples, took leave of them, and departed to go into Macedonia.
the uproar. At the end of the previous chapter, all of Ephesus was rioting. Thousands of angry men were shouting for two hours.
Acts 19:34. But when they perceived that he was a Jew, all with one voice for a time of about two hours cried out, “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!”
VERSE 2. When he had gone through those parts, and had encouraged them with many words, he came into Greece.
encouraged them with many words. This sermon was not brief.
VERSE 3. When he had spent three months there, and a plot was made against him by Jews as he was about to set sail for Syria, he determined to return through Macedonia.
VERSE 4. These accompanied him as far as Asia: Sopater of Beroea; Aristarchus and Secundus of the Thessalonians; Gaius of Derbe; Timothy; and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia.
VERSE 5. But these had gone ahead, and were waiting for us at Troas.
VERSE 6. We sailed away from Philippi after the days of Unleavened Bread, and came to them at Troas in five days, where we stayed seven days.
VERSE 7. On the first day of the week, when the disciples were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart on the next day, and continued his speech until midnight.
Paul talked with them. When Paul was in Troas, he met with the believers. He delivered a sermon that lasted until midnight.
we. One manuscript reads “they” instead of “we.”
VERSE 9. A certain young man named Eutychus sat in the window, weighed down with deep sleep. As Paul spoke still longer, being weighed down by his sleep, he fell down from the third floor and was taken up dead.
weighed down with deep sleep. This Eutychus was sitting in an open window. In the midst of the lengthy sermon, he fell asleep, then fell out the window to his death. And you think you’ve heard some long sermons!
VERSE 10. Paul went down and fell upon him, and embracing him said, “Don’t be troubled, for his life is in him.”
embracing him. Paul brought Eutychus back to life.
VERSE 11. When he had gone up, and had broken bread and eaten, and had talked with them a long while, even until break of day, he departed.
talked with them a long while. Then Paul’s lengthy sermon resumed. He talked straight through the night until daybreak.
VERSE 12. They brought the boy in alive, and were greatly comforted.
VERSE 13. But we, going ahead to the ship, set sail for Assos, intending to take Paul aboard there; for he had so arranged, intending himself to go by land.
VERSE 14. When he met us at Assos, we took him aboard, and came to Mitylene.
VERSE 15. Sailing from there, we came the following day opposite Chios. The next day we touched at Samos and stayed at Trogyllium, and the day after we came to Miletus.
VERSE 16. For Paul had determined to sail past Ephesus, that he might not have to spend time in Asia; for he was hastening, if it were possible for him, to be in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost.
VERSE 17. From Miletus he sent to Ephesus, and called to himself the elders of the assembly.
VERSE 18. When they had come to him, he said to them, “You yourselves know, from the first day that I set foot in Asia, how I was with you all the time,
VERSE 19. serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears, and with trials which happened to me by the plots of the Jews;
VERSE 20. how I didn’t shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable, teaching you publicly and from house to house,
I didn’t shrink from declaring to you. The Christian faith is based on a message. It is a message about Jesus Christ. If Christians do not speak that message, they are withholding blessings from other people.
teaching you publicly and from house to house. Paul spoke the message of Jesus Christ in every way possible.
VERSE 21. testifying both to Jews and to Greeks repentance toward God, and faith toward our Lord Jesus.
our Lord Jesus. One manuscript adds “Christ.”
VERSE 22. Now, behold, I go bound by the Spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there;
VERSE 23. except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions wait for me.
VERSE 24. But these things don’t count; nor do I hold my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to fully testify to the Good News of the grace of God.
these things don’t count. Paul’s life was filled with many uncertainties. Yet he did not let them prevent him from moving in the right direction.
nor do I hold my life dear to myself. In order to spread the faith, Paul was willing to take risks. Great risks.
so that I may finish my race. Our faith-life is like a marathon race. It began when we initially came to faith in Jesus Christ, and it is completed when we pass into eternity. Paul wanted to run that race with excellence.
with joy. Paul’s life of faith was not a dreary set of obligations. It was a wellspring of joy!
to fully testify to the Good News. What was the essence of Paul’s faith-life? It was likely the spreading of the message about Jesus Christ. In the final analysis, what else is there?
VERSE 25. “Now, behold, I know that you all, among whom I went about preaching God’s Kingdom, will see my face no more.
VERSE 26. Therefore I testify to you today that I am clean from the blood of all men,
the whole counsel of God. Paul did not withhold any elements of the Christian message from people.
VERSE 28. Take heed, therefore, to yourselves, and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the assembly of the Lord and God which he purchased with his own blood.
Take heed, therefore, to yourselves. For those in Christian ministry, their first priority is to remain walking with Jesus Christ. All else is secondary.
and to all the flock. The second priority is to be a good shepherd for their people.
which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. The Holy Spirit will entrust specific people to your care. We are to keep careful watch over them, not as controllers, but as loving shepherds. We are to build them up.
the Lord and God. Some manuscripts omit “the Lord and.”
VERSE 29. For I know that after my departure, vicious wolves will enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
vicious wolves will enter in among you. This seems almost inevitable. Almost every group, Christian or otherwise, eventually gets infiltrated by a few trouble-makers.
not sparing the flock. Trouble-makers may have a deep-seated compulsion to stir the pot and enrage people and divide the flock.
VERSE 30. Men will arise from among your own selves, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them.
speaking perverse things. Often, the fulcrum that trouble-makers use is legalism. They demand that others agree with their own doctrine or practice. They demand legalist adherance.
to draw away the disciples after them. The goal of a trouble-maker is to gain followers. They gain followers by stealing them.
VERSE 31. Therefore watch, remembering that for a period of three years I didn’t cease to admonish everyone night and day with tears.
VERSE 32. Now, brothers, I entrust you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build up, and to give you the inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
Now, brothers. This are Paul’s parting words to the elders in Ephesus. They are marvelous!
The Greek word for ‘brothers” here and where the context allows may also be correctly translated “brothers and sisters” or “siblings.”
VERSE 33. I coveted no one’s silver, gold, or clothing.
VERSE 34. You yourselves know that these hands served my necessities, and those who were with me.
VERSE 35. In all things I gave you an example, that so laboring you ought to help the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’”
VERSE 36. When he had spoken these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.
fell on Paul’s neck and kissed him. Some people try to portray Paul as an obnoxious jerk. However, this verse shows how much people loved him.
VERSE 38. sorrowing most of all because of the word which he had spoken, that they should see his face no more. Then they accompanied him to the ship.
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