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You're Crazy!

Daily Reading: Acts 26


Scripture Focus: And as he was saying these things in his defense, Festus said with a loud voice, “Paul, you are out of your mind; your great learning is driving you out of your mind.” (Acts 26.24)


Devotional Thought: When brought before King Agrippa and Governor Festus, Paul gave a heartfelt account of his conversion to faith in Jesus. In an impassioned but well-reasoned speech, he testified of his background, his education, his sincerity, and his determination. Even though he was on trial defending himself, he could not help but testify.


Festus, however, had a hard heart towards the gospel. Exasperated, as he interrupted Paul’s defense, “Paul, you are out of your mind; your great learning is driving you out of your mind” (v. 24). This Roman ruler could not understand how such an intelligent and educated man, as Paul had undoubtedly proven himself to be, could believe in such nonsense as a man rising from the dead.


In the same way, today’s world is befuddled that reasonable, intelligent people could believe in the "fairy tales" of the Bible. There is a biblical explanation for this: “The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit" (1 Corinthians 2.14).


Paul, recognizing Festus’s hard heart, turned his attention to King Agrippa. In the same way, we should be testing the hearts of those around us. Sadly, there are some in whom the Spirit has yet to work. The seeds that we sow will fall on the path, never taking root in their hearts. They will be ever hearing, but never understanding; ever seeing, but never perceiving, (Isaiah 6.9). When we sense the Spirit’s work in a heart, may we always be ready and anxious to scatter the seeds of the gospel.


Jenny


Prayer: Lord, help our ears to hear and our eyes to see your truth! Thank you for giving us a Helper, without whom we could not comprehend the wonderful mystery of the gospel. Prompt us and equip us to respond to the Spirit-softened hearts of those around us. Amen.


Psalm of the Day: Psalm 74.1-8

1 O God, why do you cast us off forever? Why does your anger smoke against the sheep of your pasture? 2 Remember your congregation, which you have purchased of old, which you have redeemed to be the tribe of your heritage! Remember Mount Zion, where you have dwelt. 3 Direct your steps to the perpetual ruins; the enemy has destroyed everything in the sanctuary!

4 Your foes have roared in the midst of your meeting place; they set up their own signs for signs. 5 They were like those who swing axes in a forest of trees. 6 And all its carved wood they broke down with hatchets and hammers. 7 They set your sanctuary on fire; they profaned the dwelling place of your name, bringing it down to the ground. 8 They said to themselves, “We will utterly subdue them”; they burned all the meeting places of God in the land.

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