God, open your Word to me. And as you open your Word, open my heart, too, that I may receive what you have in store for me today.
The Council was made up of the top religious leaders of Paul’s day. Religious issues were brought to them for solutions. Because of Paul’s boldness, he now stood before them. The Roman authorities did not want to get involved with Paul once they found out he was a Roman citizen, so these same authorities turned Paul over to the Council. And Paul takes the opportunity to share the gospel with them! Amazing. As Paul spoke, conflict arose among the religious leaders, some of whom were in favor of Paul. When a near riot broke out, Paul was whisked away by the soldiers and placed in custody. A plot to kill Paul was later uncovered and the Roman authorities were alerted. The local Roman authorities made the decision to send Paul to another city to be brought before Governor Felix. Paul would then have the opportunity to share Jesus with other influential gatekeepers.
Sometimes religious people are totally entrenched in their self-righteousness and are the toughest people to share Jesus with. Are you still open to receiving God’s Word from the lips of other believers? Are there truths in the Bible that you disagree with? If so, ask God for faith to believe.
Pray for God to soften the hearts of people who are trapped by religion. Look for opportunities to share the truth of God’s Word with them.
Save me from religion, Lord. Now that I have real faith in you, help me to be gracious to religious people and not be angry or bitter.