Question: Are we reaching out to others around the world?
After the uproar had ceased, Paul called the disciples to himself, embraced them, and departed to go to Macedonia.
2 Now when he had gone over that region and encouraged them with many words, he came to Greece
3 and stayed three months. And when the Jews plotted against him as he was about to sail to Syria, he decided to return through Macedonia.
4 And Sopater of Berea accompanied him to Asia—also Aristarchus and Secundus of the Thessalonians, and Gaius of Derbe, and Timothy, and Tychicus and Trophimus of Asia.
5 These men, going ahead, waited for us at Troas.
6 But we sailed away from Philippi after the Days of Unleavened Bread, and in five days joined them at Troas, where we stayed seven days.
In summary, Paul leaves Ephesus, travels through Macedonia, then goes down to Greece/Achaia. He intended to sail to Antioch, but learns the Jews plotted against him. Therefore, he turns around, and goes back through Macedonia. Last he comes over the Agean Sea to Troas with representatives from various churches.
Does God Protect Us?
We know that God allowed Paul to suffer in many towns. We know he had been stoned in Lystra and beaten and imprisoned in Phillipi, but God also protected him in Corinth and Ephesus. Now once again God protects Paul by allowing him to learn about the Jews plotting against him. We also know from the passages below that Paul was gathering a collection from the churches to take back to the poor saints in Jerusalem. Therefore, in this passage, we learn God not only spared Paul from harm, but He also protected the offering from possibly being stollen. In the USA we do not suffer persecution as Paul, but God still allows us to suffer or to be protected from health, financial, and relationship problems. God has a purpose for each case. For we know that all things work together for good to them that love God.
1 Corinthians 16
1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I have given orders to the churches of Galatia, so you must do also:
2 On the first day of the week let each one of you lay something aside, storing up as he may prosper, that there be no collections when I come.
3 And when I come, whomever you approve by your letters I will send to bear your gift to Jerusalem.
4 But if it is fitting that I go also, they will go with me.
5 Now I will come to you when I pass through Macedonia (for I am passing through Macedonia).
6 And it may be that I will remain, or even spend the winter with you, that you may send me on my journey, wherever I go.
7 For I do not wish to see you now on the way; but I hope to stay a while with you, if the Lord permits.
8 But I will tarry in Ephesus until Pentecost.
23 But now no longer having a place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come to you,
24 whenever I journey to Spain, I shall come to you. For I hope to see you on my journey, and to be helped on my way there by you, if first I may enjoy your company for a while.
25 But now I am going to Jerusalem to minister to the saints.
26 For it pleased those from Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor among the saints who are in Jerusalem.
Are we reaching out to others around the world?
The last time Luke mentioned Troas, Paul had received the Macadonian call in a vision. The man in the vision asked Paul to come over and help, but now the Macedonians are bringing help (the collection) from Macedonia toward the poor saints in Jerusalem. And help is coming not only from Macedonia, but from other places where Paul was able to reach. The men mentioned in our passage seem to be representatives from the different churches which made contribution to Paul’s collection. Men of Macedonia are mentioned from Barea, Thessalonica, and Luke (the person writing “we”) from Phillipi. The brothers from Asia are mentioned. The brothers from Galatia are mentioned. There may have been others not mentioned as well. It is truly a miracle what God did through Paul to receive all this fruit, these souls, throughout Paul’s journeys.
Are we involved in missions in some way? Are we reaching out around the world? There are several missions organizations for which we can pray, can give money, or can even do short term or long term service. Samaritan’s Purse is an excellent organization. Please feel free to list other organizations you recommend below in the comments.
There are also organizations where we can reach around the world without ever leaving. As I have mentioned in posts before, Global Media Outreach (GMO) is an internet ministry that allows you to reach out through email all around the world. I have been blessed to be able to encourage and be encouraged by men serving God from India, Africa, Australia, and other places throughout the world through the GMO ministry.
Find some way to not only serve your area where you live, but also extend your outreach beyond your borders.
Acts 1:8 But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.
Mat 18:19 Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:
20 Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen
God bless, Bob