Acts Chapter Twenty part 4, A study of Acts 20:17, Acts 20:18 & 19, Acts 20:20 & 21, and Acts 20:22 & 23 featuring our Common Man's Commentary

Acts 20:17

"From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders of the church." NIV translation

Even though Paul was in a hurry to get to Jerusalem, he made time to talk to the Christian leaders from Ephesus.

Acts 20:18 & 19

"When they arrived, he said to them: 'You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia. I served the Lord with great humility and with tears, although I was severely tested by the plots of the Jews.'" NIV translation

When the leaders from Ephesus arrived, Paul began by reminding them of his service. Paul had not only proclaimed the gospel in the province but he also had demonstrated it as well. He also reminded them of the opposition that he had faced from the established religious leaders.

Acts 20:20 & 21

"You know that I have not hesitated to preach anything that would be helpful to you but have taught you publicly and from house to house. I have declared both to Jews and Greeks that they must turn to God in repentance and have faith in our Lord Jesus." NIV translation

Paul reminds the Ephesian elders that he did not hold back anything in his teaching but shared it all publicly with anyone who would listen.

There are many today that want to just tickle the ears of people and not really teach them how to follow Jesus because they don't want to offend anyone. The simple fact of the matter is that there are parts of the Bible that will offend each of us because we all have areas of our lives that do not match God's desire for our lives. The Word can bring us to repentance but you will not change if you aren't made aware of the problem and that is why all of the Word must be preached.

Acts 20:22 & 23

"'And now, compelled by the Spirit, I am going to Jerusalem, not knowing what will happen to me there. I only know that in every city the Holy Spirit warns me that prison and hardships are facing me.'" NIV translation

Paul doesn't know the details of what is coming but he knows that it is not going to be easy. Even though he knows that he is facing this hardship, the Spirit is "compelling" him to go to Jerusalem. God grants us "free will" to do or not do things but He will give us guidance as to what He wants us to do. This is what Paul is talking about and Paul has made it a habit to listen and obey the leading of the Holy Spirit.

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