Acts Chapter Twenty Three part 4, A study of Acts 23:16 - 18, Acts 23:19 - 21, and Acts 23:22 - 24 featuring our Common Man's Commentary

Acts 23:16 - 18

"But when the son of Paul's sister heard of this plot, he went into the barracks and told Paul. Then Paul called one of the centurions and said, 'Take this young man to the commander; he has something to tell him.' So he took him to the commander. The centurion said, 'Paul, the prisoner, sent for me and asked me to bring this young man to you because he has something to tell you.'" NIV translation

Paul's nephew learned of the plot to kill him and went to tell him about it. Paul then sent him to tell the commander what he knew. This is a wonderful example of how God takes care of His own people. God had Paul's nephew where he needed to be at the perfect time to hear of the plan. That same God is at work in our lives today; we just need to slow down and be alert to see Him at work.

Acts 23:19 - 21

"The commander took the young man by the hand, drew him aside and asked, 'What is it you want to tell me?' He said, 'The Jews have agreed to ask you to bring Paul before the Sanhedrin tomorrow on the pretext of wanting more accurate information about him. Don't give in to them, because more than forty of them are waiting in ambush for him. They have taken an oath not to eat or drink until they have killed him. They are ready now, waiting for your consent to their request.'" NIV translation

Paul's nephew repeated the story to the commander. Given the facts, the commander now has a choice to make and this is a picture of our job in sharing the good news of Jesus Christ. We, like Paul's nephew, are called to tell people what we know but we cannot make them do the right thing and accept Christ. 

No matter how many fancy words we can come up with it is still comes down to people hearing about the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Acts 23:22 - 24

"The commander dismissed the young man and cautioned him, 'Don't tell anyone that you have reported this to me.' Then he called two of his centurions and ordered them, 'Get ready a detachment of two hundred soldiers, seventy horsemen and two hundred spearmen to go to Caesarea at nine tonight. Provide mounts for Paul so that he may be taken safely to Governor Felix.'" NIV translation

The commander decided to do the right thing and so he sent Paul to the governor under heavy guard. It would not have went well for him if he had let Paul, a Roman citizen, be killed by a bunch of Jews and so he sent the problem to his boss, the governor. Sometimes, God uses people that don't even know Him to do His will and that is what happens here as God's will was for Paul to testify in Rome. This is the first step in that journey.

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