The Apostle Paul: God’s Mysterious Ways.

13 “Then Paul answered, “What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be imprisoned but even to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.” 14 And since he would not be persuaded, we ceased and said, “Let the will of the Lord be done.” 15 After these days we got ready and went up to Jerusalem. 16 And some of the disciples from Caesarea went with us, bringing us to the house of Mnason of Cyprus, an early disciple, with whom we should lodge.” (Acts 21:13–16)

 The Apostle Paul’s reaction to the Caesarean believers’ efforts to convince him to not go to Jerusalem touched him deeply. However, he would not be dissuaded from his mission. Paul said, ““What are you doing, weeping and breaking my heart? For I am ready not only to be imprisoned but even to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.”

Upon realizing they could not convince Paul otherwise, the Caesarean Christians, including Paul’s companion Luke, finally ceased their pleadings. “And since he would not be persuaded, we ceased and said, “Let the will of the Lord be done.”

Dr. John Walvoord explains that, “Though Luke did not say so, apparently one reason this trip to Jerusalem was important to Paul was that he was taking an offering to the Jerusalem believers (cf. 24:17; Rom. 15:25–27; 1 Cor. 16:1–4; 2 Cor. 8:13–14; 9:12–13; Gal. 2:10). Paul wanted to make this presentation of money in order to fortify one of his basic doctrines, the unity of Jew and Gentile in Christ (Eph. 2:11–22; 3:6).”

Luke then recorded what immediately transpired. “After these days we got ready and went up to Jerusalem. 16 And some of the disciples from Caesarea went with us, bringing us to the house of Mnason of Cyprus, an early disciple, with whom we should lodge.”

Paul, and his companions, finally arrived in the capital city of Israel. It is estimated that with the Feast of Pentecost fast approaching, Paul spent at least 36 days, a little over a month, traveling from Philippi to Caesarea. This was followed by several days traveling from Caesarea to Jerusalem, to be there in time for the festival. Paul’s arrival would be an experience of the calm before the storm.

Hymn writer William Cowper wrote,

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.

Deep in unsearchable mines
Of never-failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs
And works His sovereign will.

And ye fearful saints, fresh courage take
The clouds you so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings, on your head.

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense
But trust Him for His grace
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast
Unfolding every hour
The bud may have a bitter taste
But sweet will be the flower.

Paul was prepared for whatever would happen in his life? Are we prepared in such a way? May the Lord give each of us a profound sense of His overarching providence. Have a wonderful day.

Soli deo Gloria!

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