Lectio Divina: Acts 19:23-41 / Psalm 115

Overview of Series

-The series: Our life’s work/purpose (Acts 19-20)

-The question: “What makes you come alive? And, what’s the legacy you wish to leave behind?”

-Week #1: Our passions (Living empowered lives means living w/ greater purpose)

-Week #2: Our plan (Faithfulness feeds purpose, purpose feeds faith)

 

Today’s Meditation

-Week #3: Our problems

-The question: “What do we do when we meet opposition to our calling and plan?”

 

-READ Acts 19:23-41 (Consider: the legacy the merchants and the power of their gods)

-“23 About that time there arose a great disturbance about the Way. 24 A silversmith named Demetrius, who made silver shrines of Artemis, brought in a lot of business for the craftsmen there. 25 He called them together, along with the workers in related trades, and said: “You know, my friends, that we receive a good income from this business. 26 And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that gods made by human hands are no gods at all. 27 There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited; and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.”

28 When they heard this, they were furious and began shouting: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!” 29 Soon the whole city was in an uproar. The people seized Gaius and Aristarchus, Paul’s traveling companions from Macedonia, and all of them rushed into the theater together. 30 Paul wanted to appear before the crowd, but the disciples would not let him. 31 Even some of the officials of the province, friends of Paul, sent him a message begging him not to venture into the theater.

32 The assembly was in confusion: Some were shouting one thing, some another. Most of the people did not even know why they were there. 33 The Jews in the crowd pushed Alexander to the front, and they shouted instructions to him. He motioned for silence in order to make a defense before the people. 34 But when they realized he was a Jew, they all shouted in unison for about two hours: “Great is Artemis of the Ephesians!”

35 The city clerk quieted the crowd and said: “Fellow Ephesians, doesn’t all the world know that the city of Ephesus is the guardian of the temple of the great Artemis and of her image, which fell from heaven? 36 Therefore, since these facts are undeniable, you ought to calm down and not do anything rash. 37 You have brought these men here, though they have neither robbed temples nor blasphemed our goddess. 38 If, then, Demetrius and his fellow craftsmen have a grievance against anybody, the courts are open and there are proconsuls. They can press charges. 39 If there is anything further you want to bring up, it must be settled in a legal assembly. 40 As it is, we are in danger of being charged with rioting because of what happened today. In that case we would not be able to account for this commotion, since there is no reason for it.” 41 After he had said this, he dismissed the assembly.

-MEDITATION: WHAT LEGACY DID THESE MERCHANTS LEAVE BEHIND? HOW DOES THIS RELATE TO THE WAY THEY VIEWED THEIR GODS?
READ: Psalm 115 (Consider: The legacy of God and His power)

-Psalm 115 – “Not to us, Lord, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness. Why do the nations say, “Where is their God?” Our God is in heaven; he does whatever pleases him. But their idols are silver and gold, made by human hands. They have mouths, but cannot speak, eyes, but cannot see. They have ears, but cannot hear, noses, but cannot smell. They have hands, but cannot feel, feet, but cannot walk, nor can they utter a sound with their throats. Those who make them will be like them, and so will all who trust in them. All you Israelites, trust in the Lord— he is their help and shield. 10 House of Aaron, trust in the Lord— he is their help and shield. 11 You who fear him, trust in the Lord— he is their help and shield. 12 The Lord remembers us and will bless us: He will bless his people Israel, he will bless the house of Aaron, 13 he will bless those who fear the Lord— small and great alike. 14 May the Lord cause you to flourish, both you and your children. 15 May you be blessed by the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. 16 The highest heavens belong to the Lord, but the earth he has given to mankind. 17 It is not the dead who praise the Lord, those who go down to the place of silence; 18 it is we who extol the Lord, both now and forevermore. Praise the Lord.”

-MEDITATION: WHAT’S THE LEGACY AND DESCRIPTIONS OF GOD IN PSALM 115? HOW DOES THIS RELATE TO THE WAY WE VIEW GOD?

-MEDITATION: WHAT PERSONAL DIFFERENCE DOES IT MAKE TODAY TO VIEW GOD AS POWERFUL VS. LUCKY CHARM?
Encouragement

What makes you feel alive? Do it in faith, knowing you are backed by a powerful God

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