Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Advent Archive: Acts 24

In Paul’s two letters to Timothy, he tells him to make sure that he is “blameless.” This is the idea that no matter what negative thing someone else says about you, no one will believe them because the reputation of your character is so clear to those around you that they would never imagine you doing the heinous things charged. The beauty of Paul’s teaching is that he would not instruct something that he didn’t personally live out. You see, in Acts 24 Paul is called before the Roman governor Felix and is charged of wrongdoing by a Jewish lawyer Tertullus. Paul however had the perfect defense…his reputation based upon his personal character. You see, all Paul had to do to start the refutation of the charges wasn’t to undermine Tertullus’ reputation or to say that he was a liar. Rather, Paul just said “ask anybody who grew up with me or has known me my whole life, they will tell you that I am blameless. As a matter of fact, ask anyone who was there that day that I am being charged for, they will tell you too.” Blameless. There wasn’t a moment when Paul let his guard down and blew it. He was always aware that he was a servant of Christ who should remain blameless. Why? Well, as far as I can see from the text, it allowed him to faithfully and clearly present the gospel to a group of people most likely would never before or never after have a chance to hear it. Why should you be blameless? For your own applause? No, for the same reason as Paul, so that the proclamation of the gospel would be able to find opportunity through your life.

Food For Thought: How does Paul’s example go against the modern pop culture attitude of “I don’t care what anyone thinks about me, I’ll just do what I want to do!”?