Mar 8, 2018
It was Jesus who referred to Paul as, “my chosen instrument.” He had called and commissioned Paul to take the message of the gospel to the Gentiles and to kings. And Paul had proven to be a faithful servant, carrying out that calling with fearless determination. He had been beaten, flogged, rejected, run out of town, and even stoned, but he never gave up. He refused to back down. And now, Luke begins to chronicle Paul’s divinely appointed journey to Rome. The Roman tribune in Jerusalem had no idea what to do with Paul. He could find no reason to keep Paul, let alone punish him. So, he determined to send Paul to Caesarea, where the Roman governor, Felix, could assess the situation and make a judgment. As we have stressed repeatedly, these encounters were divine appointments, orchestrated by God and in fulfillment of the words of Jesus. Paul had been chosen by Jesus to accomplish great things for the kingdom, and that was going to include standing before some of the most powerful men in the Roman empire. And there was nothing that was going to stand in the way of God’s will being accomplished. Paul had divine protection. That didn’t exempt him from difficulty, because Jesus had clearly predicted that Paul’s life would be marked by suffering. But it meant that his life and ministry were under divine protection until God decided Paul’s work on earth was done.