June 8/Acts 24

Verses 1-23 > Accusations were made against Paul but they were all lies and he refuted everyone of them. This reminds me of Satan. He accuses us before God. (Revelation 12:10) He tries to remind God and us of all the wrong we have done in our lives. His efforts are all in vain because the person who has yielded his or her life to Jesus has a clean record! (Colossians 2:13-14) The blood of Jesus washes away all of our sins (Ephesians 1:7) past, present and future. Now that is good news! God placed all those sins on Jesus (Isaiah 53:5-6) when he was hanging on the cross. God will never ever use them against us. He chooses not to remember them. (Hebrews 8:12) So when Satan goes to God and says, ” Do you remember when Dan …., God says I don’t know what you are talking about.” Isn’t that tremendously good news! If God doesn’t use our past against us neither should we. The past is for forgetting!

It feels good to have a clean record doesn’t it?

Revelation 12:10 (NLT) — 10 Then I heard a loud voice shouting across the heavens, “It has come at last— salvation and power and the Kingdom of our God, and the authority of his Christ. For the accuser of our brothers and sisters has been thrown down to earth— the one who accuses them before our God day and night.

Colossians 2:13–14 (NLT) — 13 You were dead because of your sins and because your sinful nature was not yet cut away. Then God made you alive with Christ, for he forgave all our sins. 14 He canceled the record of the charges against us and took it away by nailing it to the cross.

Ephesians 1:7 (NLT) — 7 He is so rich in kindness and grace that he purchased our freedom with the blood of his Son and forgave our sins.

Isaiah 53:5–6 (NLT) — 5 But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. 6 All of us, like sheep, have strayed away. We have left God’s paths to follow our own. Yet the Lord laid on him the sins of us all.

Hebrews 8:12 (NLT) — 12 And I will forgive their wickedness, and I will never again remember their sins.”

Verses 24-27 > Felix was familiar with the teachings of Jesus, his heart was moved with fear, but he would not obey the truth. It is not enough to have an emotional response to the message about Christ. One must repent of his or hers sins and trust Jesus with their lives. Jesus said this about those kind of people > John 5:40 (NLT) — 40 Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life.

Drusilla who was Jewish had a very interesting genealogy. She came from a line of Herod’s. Her great grandfather tried to kill Jesus in Bethlehem. See Matthew 2. Her great uncle killed John the Baptist and made fun of Jesus. See Luke 23:6-12. He father had the Apostle James killed. See Acts 12:1-2.

Paul had a three point message for them which is just as relevant for us today.

1. Righteousness > In other words what are you going to do about the sin in your life? In our world today we don’t talk about sin. We talk about mistakes, faults, tendencies, weaknesses and errors. I guess nobody sins anymore. Try telling that to God. A holy God demands righteousness > that’s the bad news. The good news is that this holy God provides us with his own righteousness to those who trust in Jesus. Felix and Drusilla were sinners.

Romans 3:21–26 (NLT) — 21 But now God has shown us a way to be made right with him without keeping the requirements of the law, as was promised in the writings of Moses and the prophets long ago. 22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. 23 For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. 24 Yet God freely and graciously declares that we are righteous. He did this through Christ Jesus when he freed us from the penalty for our sins. 25 For God presented Jesus as the sacrifice for sin. People are made right with God when they believe that Jesus sacrificed his life, shedding his blood. This sacrifice shows that God was being fair when he held back and did not punish those who sinned in times past, 26 for he was looking ahead and including them in what he would do in this present time. God did this to demonstrate his righteousness, for he himself is fair and just, and he declares sinners to be right in his sight when they believe in Jesus.

2. Self-Control > We must do something with the temptations of the day. Man seems to have control over most everything except himself. Felix and Drusilla had not exercised self-control. Felix didn’t hesitate to lie, or murder to get rid of his enemies so he could promote himself. Drusilla divorced her husband so she could become Felix’s third wife. They didn’t know much about self-control and neither does the world or the church we live in today.

1 Peter 1:13 (NLT) — 13 So prepare your minds for action and exercise self-control. Put all your hope in the gracious salvation that will come to you when Jesus Christ is revealed to the world.

3. The Day of Judgment > Jesus Christ will either be your Judge or your Savior. Which one will he be to you?

Acts 17:31 (NLT) — 31 For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.”

So what did Felix and Drusilla do? They put off making a decision. Remember the old saying, “One of these days becomes none of these days”. One of the best lies of Satan is to whisper to people, “There is no hurry you have plenty of time to make a decision for Jesus.” No one is guaranteed another breath or another heart beat. The best time to receive Jesus is now. The best time to tell someone the Good News about Jesus is Now!

Be Inspired Hilltop!

 

Comments

  1. Mark Gundersen says:

    Felix wanted to talk with Paul in order to get earthly wealth, a bribe, not heavenly wealth. His interest in money made him delay dealing with Paul. He served money so could not serve God. This does not mean that Paul’s words fell on deaf ears. He spent years in the center of Roman power and authority in Palestine. This also set up the situation where Paul will throw himself on the judgement of Caesar in the subsequent chapters and head to Rome. If God seems to have you in a holding pattern what are you doing with your time?