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ACTS "talks."

Prompts and commentary as you read right through the Acts of the Apostles.

Bringing to you God's wonderful message as found in the Holy Bible.

"Good News Compage" 88.A.

based on

Acts chapter chapter 25, verses 1-12..

(PLEASE READ THESE VERSES IN THE BIBLE, and the following comments.)


Church and State.

If you had to make a choice between Church and State, would you have made the same strange choice that Paul made here?

The Roman governor, Porcius Festus, had just taken over from Felix. Felix had left Paul in prison for about two years. (Acts 24:27.) Almost immediately the chief priests and Jewish leaders “urgently requested Festus, as a favour to them, to have Paul transferred to Jerusalem, for they were preparing an ambush to kill him along the way.

“Festus answered, ‘Paul is being held at Caesarea … Let some of your leaders come with me and press charges against the man there, if he has done anything wrong.’” (verses 2-5.)

The Jewish church would not be satisfied until this preacher was put to death, because he was a nuisance and embarrassment to them! In Paul’s teaching it was neither priests nor church laws that could make a person right with God, it was only by faith in Jesus. (1stTimothy 2:5-6. Acts 13:38-39.) At Paul’s trial in Caesarea, “the Jews who had come from Jerusalem stood around him, bringing many serious charges against him, which they could not prove.

“Then Paul made his defence: ‘I have done nothing wrong against the Law of the Jews, or against the temple or against Caesar.’ (verses 6-8.)

In the eyes of the State Paul was not guilty of any crime. But, “Festus, wishing to do the Jews a favour, said to Paul, ‘Are you willing to go up to Jerusalem and stand trial before me there on these charges?’

“Paul answered, ‘I am now standing before Caesar’s court, where I ought to be tried. I have not done any wrong to the Jews, as you yourself know very well. If, however, I am guilty of doing anything deserving death, I do not refuse to die. But if the charges brought against me by these Jews are not true, no one has the right to hand me over to them. I appeal to Caesar!’”

“Festus … declared: ‘You have appealed to Caesar. To Caesar you will go.’” (verses 9-12.)

Paul saw that the state law protected his right and freedom to preach; but the Church was wanting to put him to death for preaching Christ Jesus as Lord and Saviour.

In many countries around the world today, Believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are persecuted and intimidated by Church or/and State, as ungodly and malicious influences gain more and more authority in governments and religions. Increasingly today, many in the name of Church or/and State, use dishonest and wicked means to prevent the preaching of the Word of God. This is not surprising to the Christian – Jesus warned us that the quickeing of this evil worldwide trend would indicate the time of His return was drawing near. (Matthew 10:17-20. 24:7-14.) But Jesus promised, “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven…” (Matthew 5:11-12.)

Read Acts 25, verses 1-12.

John Nixon, Cork, Ireland. P31HD98.        Contact:  jnixonj@gmail.com

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