Blogger’s Note: … Had to wait until the evening, here in France where we're vacationing to post my journal entry for today. I’ll be on French time for about 10 days and this posting may not match readers who’re used to me posting my journal entries each morning on CST in the USA. Thanks for your patience if you're following here.
Passage of the Day: Acts 5: 33 – 39 ... 33 When they [the Sanhedrin, the Jewish High Council] heard this [that the Apostles would follow the teachings of Jesus rather that the commands of the Council], they were furious and plotted to kill them. 34 Then one in the council stood up, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a teacher of the law held in respect by all the people, and commanded them to put the apostles outside for a little while. 35 And he said to them: “Men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what you intend to do regarding these men. 36 For some time ago Theudas rose up, claiming to be somebody. A number of men, about four hundred, joined him. He was slain, and all who obeyed him were scattered and came to nothing. 37 After this man, Judas of Galilee rose up in the days of the census, and drew away many people after him. He also perished, and all who obeyed him were dispersed. 38 And now I say to you, keep away from these men and let them alone; for if this plan or this work is of men, it will come to nothing; 39 but if it is of God, you cannot overthrow it—lest you even be found to fight against God.”
My Journal for Today: This passage, before the conversion of the Apostle Paul, is a fascinating illustration of God’s controlling influences in life. Here we have the Apostles, before Paul became one of them, brought before the Sanhedrin for trial; and Paul, then Saul of Tarsus, was no doubt in attendance. And remember, at this time the young Pharisee, Saul, would have been the hothead zealot who hated everything that Peter and Christ’s disciples represented. And in this historical scenario, an unexpected ally steps up, … Gamaliel, a teacher of note and considered a Master Rabbi of his day, … and a man who had been the Mentor of Saul of Tarsus. So, what does this man advise with regard to these Christians? Well, he tells the Sanhedrin to back off, saying that if their true God was truly in charge of this Christian movement, nothing the Sanhedrin could do would or could stop it.
This must’ve been a shocker for young Saul, the Christian hater. But it’s illustrative of how God’s truth, and especially His will, can and will prevail even when mankind has other motives or plans. We must remember always, as I’ve said it here so many times: “God is God, and we are not!” And when God has His mind and heart in a course of action, the biases and stereotypes of mankind will not thwart our Lord.
So, when things seem really … REALLY … bad, my friend; if you know that you know that you know you must follow God’s way, rather than man’s, you stay in there, my friend. If your way is God’s way, then there will be Gamaliels there or other forces at work to allow God’s will to prevail. We certainly saw that modeled best during Christ’s Passion, didn’t we? And we have seen it at work in this scenario as well.
My Prayer for Today: Lord, show me YOUR way so that I will not become deceived by mine, nor discouraged by the world. Amen