Summary: You can survive this if you will do exactly as i say. (Jesus)

Surviving Disaster Series – #3 –


Acts 27:1-44

On the Series by Spike TV, the day of fun and fishing turned into a day of fighting for their lives. How can we avoid a shipwreck?

In our text we find another shipwreck.

Paul later applied his experience to being shipwrecked to how people can suffer a shipwreck in their lives. See 1 Timothy 1:19.

The account of this shipwreck was not put in the Bible to merely entertain us, but it contains several important lessons. This shipwreck could have been avoided. The shipwreck was the result of several bad decisions!

You can avoid disaster by…

I. Not Making Hasty Decisions (7-8).

Progress had been slow. Delays cost money in the shipping industry. This ship owner wanted to get to his destination as quickly as possible.

With a favorable wind, the distance between Myra and Cindus should have been covered in day. The question now was, should they put into Cnidus and wait for better weather, or should they sail on. They sailed on because the captain of the ship wanted to make all speed to Rome with his cargo, and the centurion was anxious to deliver his prisoners without costly delays.

Now when you get impatient, you get impulsive.

Proverbs 14:29—“…he that is hasty of spirit exalteth folly.”

Proverbs 19:2 “…he that hasteth with his feet sinneth.”

Haste leads to shipwreck. Haste leads to trouble and regrets.

Haste is the road to error. Abraham and Sarah are the classic example of haste. Abraham and Sarah got impatient with God’s promise, and their haste has cost their descendents greatly to this day!

II. Not making Decisions without Godly wisdom (9-12).

Should they continue or not?

Paul admonishes them it would be dangerous to sail at this time. Paul had experience in being shipwrecked (2 Cor. 11:25).

Julius the centurion looked at Paul, the missionary, a prisoner and underestimated him. He looked at the ship’s captain, and he saw a successful businessman, the owner of the large ship, a seasoned sailor, and he overestimated him. The centurion decided that the professional should know whether or not it is safe to proceed. The voice of the humble believer in touch with God is ignored.

He chose human reasoning instead of divine wisdom.

A. Is the scientist is more accurate than the Scripture?

B. Is the psychologist’s counsel is more valuable than the preacher’s counsel?

III. Not making Decisions based only on comfort or convenience (12a)

The Fair Havens presented some problems for a ship if it wanted to stay there over the winter. The harbor apparently was not protected as well as sailors like a harbor to be, and it did not provide as much in the line of supplies and entertainment to winter in as sailors would like.

If you live by faith, you will make some decisions that are not comfortable nor convenient.

Be careful of making decisions that cater to the flesh!

IV. Not making Decisions based only on the majority’s voice (12b)

Paul was in the minority. The majority said, “Let’s sail.” The majority doesn’t make something right; neither does the minority make something wrong.

The majority cannot be wrong when it includes the experts–or can it?

The majority is for sin and not for sanctification.

Majority of humanity is going to hell, but I am not going with them.

Majority deny the Bible, but I am not going with them.

Instead of voice of the majority, you need the voice of the Master!

You and God make a majority. Get on the side with God, and you have a majority.

Majority is not always right, but God is always right.

V. Not making Decisions based only on your circumstances or conditions alone (13).

The south wind blowing softly provided the conditions for rejecting Paul’s counsel. They knew what Paul had said, but look at the conditions.

Perhaps Julius, the pilot, and the captain smiled at Paul and said, “See, you were wrong.” It was a deceitful lull, the prelude to the unexpected. Instead of obtaining their goal, they lost everything they had.

A. Smooth sailing is not always an indication of the will of God.

The soft, southern breeze certainly illustrates the deceptiveness of sin. Sin often looks harmless. Furthermore, it also looks promising. It looks like that which will bring much pleasure and gain.

B. Beware of a false sense of security.

Never allow circumstances to outweigh God’s Word.

The only sure and accurate way of evaluating circumstances is to interpret them in light of the eternal Word.

When Jonah fled from the presence of the Lord and go to Tarshish, he “found a ship going to Tarshish.” The ready way is not the always the right way. Satan will see that transportation is provided for those who are running from the will of God.

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