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As I was going through the Book of Acts, verse 17:6 grabbed me by the lapels and gave me a good shaking:


“And when they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brothers before the city authorities, shouting, “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also,…” (ESV)


The context here is that Paul shows up in the synagogue in Thessalonica and starts “reasoning” with the Jews there, showing them that Jesus is the Christ, the long-awaited Messiah.


Even though the Jews had been praying three times a day each and every day for hundreds and hundreds of years that the Messiah would finally come, the very same people praying those prayers were very resistant to someone showing up and telling them their prayers had been answered. 


In fact, their resistance was often violent. Paul got beat up a lot. He was stoned and left for dead in one instance, but he went right back at it. (Acts 14:19) 


Even though we may say we want something, we don’t like it when our world changes. 


We want what we want, but we aren’t prepared for what we want to make us uncomfortable. The status quo, even if it’s kind of miserable, is easier to cope with than change. 


So, when our world gets turned upside down, we fight that. 


The Greek words that passages use give a sense of a nice, comfortable home being disrupted.


We like our little ruts and grooves. 


But Jesus changes everything. 


He had to change everything, because the comfy little ruts and grooves we like will eventually kill us. 


We cannot earn our way into heaven by polishing the candlesticks on the altar, feeding the homeless, or fasting until there’s nothing left of us. 


No, salvation comes in the cross and empty tomb of Jesus Christ alone. Acceptance of Him as that long-awaited Messiah, King, and LORD is the only way –and that means conceding that He is God and we are not. 


We are not in charge. 


As much as we’d like to believe we run our own comfortable lives, what if we lived like we believed what He told us? What if we lived like Paul and those first-century apostles who boldly proclaimed the Gospel in front of people whose cages were severely rattled by that message?


What if we lived like the prayers we said were coming true right before our eyes? What if all the fear and worry of our day-to-day lives dissolved like a morning fog as the sun came up and burned it away? What if we trusted our King with our very lives to the point of living with no fear of death or hardship or pain?


What if we lived in awe and wonder of the power of Jesus’ name?



Today’s Praise

John 15:7

“If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.” (ESV)

Join the discussion One Comment

  • Katie Grev says:

    Wow! Words to ponder and take to heart. Everyone wants to follow Jesus until they find out where he’s going.

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