After being hurled into the raging sea, God mercifully preserves Jonah’s life by sovereingly appointing a great sea creature to swallow him. From the belly of the fish, Jonah offers a prayer of thanksgiving to the Lord from the belly of the fish, acknowledging that he had been spared from a death he deserved. In […]

Continue reading

Paul’s point in Romans 11 is that God is not done with Israel. If they do not continue in their unbelief, they will certainly be grafted back into their own olive tree, “for God has the power to graft them in again” (Rom. 11:23). But Paul is convinced not only that they can be grafted […]

Continue reading

One of the questions that comes to mind when reading the final section of Acts is: “Why does Luke take so much time to get Paul to Rome?” Yet while we may not know every reason why certain passages are included in Scripture, we can know many of them. Knowing that the Bible is all […]

Continue reading

The Reason for the Hope, part 1 (Acts 24:1-27)

When Paul stood before the high priest and the Jewish council, he said: “It is with respect to the hope and the resurrection of the dead that I am on trial” (Acts 23:6). Over and over, Paul makes this same assertion in his defense speeches in Acts. But why did he understand his all his […]

Continue reading

Jew, Gentile, or New Creation? (Acts 21:17-26)

One of the greatest difficulties that the early church faced was the sharp division that existed between Jews and non-Jews (Gentiles). When we read our Bibles, it’s often hard for us to grasp just how serious this separation was. We certainly know what division looks like and estrangement feels like, however; just consider the year […]

Continue reading

United by Saving Grace, part 1 (Acts 15:1-12)

The greatest problem we face, and the most important question anyone can ask, is this: “How can we be saved?” This is the problem that every religion attempts to solve, yet it’s a question many refuse to ask because we don’t want to accept all that it implies. The early church wrestled with this issue […]

Continue reading

When Paul and Barnabas first came to Antioch in Pisidia, they entered the synagogue and were invited to share a word of encouragement with those in attendance. It’s here that Luke provides a summary of a typical sermon preached by the apostle Paul to Jews and God-fearers. He begins with an overview of Israel’s history, […]

Continue reading