I have really been enjoying our discussions through the Book of Acts. God has been helping me to grab a better understanding of the context in which this book was written. As I study I find myself wondering about many things concerning the administration of the early church. The more I read the more I think just how intentional the movements of the Holy Spirit, and those of the men and women who followed Him, were. I see in the story of Acts men of tremendous vision, like Paul, who geared the church for exponential growth from the get-go. As inheritors of that legacy then how can we do any less?
Well enough soap-boxing. Here is today’s discussion:
11 We boarded a boat at Troas and sailed straight across to the island of Samothrace, and the next day we landed at Neapolis. 12 From there we reached Philippi, a major city of that district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. And we stayed there several days.
13 On the Sabbath we went a little way outside the city to a riverbank, where we thought people would be meeting for prayer, and we sat down to speak with some women who had gathered there. 14 One of them was Lydia from Thyatira, a merchant of expensive purple cloth, who worshiped God. As she listened to us, the Lord opened her heart, and she accepted what Paul was saying. 15 She was baptized along with other members of her household, and she asked us to be her guests. “If you agree that I am a true believer in the Lord,” she said, “come and stay at my home.” And she urged us until we agreed.
Paul and Silas in Prison
16 One day as we were going down to the place of prayer, we met a demon-possessed slave girl. She was a fortune-teller who earned a lot of money for her masters. 17 She followed Paul and the rest of us, shouting, “These men are servants of the Most High God, and they have come to tell you how to be saved.”
18 This went on day after day until Paul got so exasperated that he turned and said to the demon within her, “I command you in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.” And instantly it left her.
Just a quick point of interest. Because Paul could not go into the mountains according to his plans he headed for the coast and ended up launching out for Macedonia (Greece) from Troas, which was the ancient city of Troy. On arrival in Macedonia he started his work in the city of Philippi. The church he planted there would later inspire the Book of Philippians.
Allow me to ask:
The demon possessed woman in our story here followed Paul around for several days before he dealt with her. Why do you think Paul chose to handle things this way?