READING: Job 1-3, Acts 17
The crowd of upset Jews stood ready to stand against Paul, Silas, and Jason, who they assumed was harboring Paul and Silas. Indeed, they aroused “some wicked men of the rabble” (Acts 17:5) to go after the men. When they did not find Paul and Silas in Jason’s home, they instead beat up Jason and accused him of receiving “these men who have turned the world upside down” (Acts 17:6). In preaching the gospel, Paul and Silas were causing an uproar and creating trouble everywhere (at least in the minds of their opponents)—God-fearing Greeks and leading women were turning not to Judaism, but to Christ. The Jews reacted in jealousy and anger.
The characterization of Paul and Silas as troublemakers may have been exaggerated to gain the support of the crowd, but the words of their opponents were nonetheless true. The gospel has a way of creating such change in lives that nothing quite stays the same. Idolaters leave their idols behind. Thieves restore what they’ve taken. Self-sufficient leaders recognize their neediness. Sinners turn from their sin, often creating some distance between themselves and their previous friends. A demand for holiness becomes the norm. For some (particularly, for those who are not believers), these changes can be troublesome—and convicting.
The gospel truly does have “turn the world upside down” power.
PRAYER: “Thank You, Lord, for the power of the gospel.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Review and catch-up day