Summary: We always look for ways to change the outcome, but only God knows the best path for us. Trusting God through life and dealing with circumstances may be difficult, but the promise is STILL salvation in Christ!
Who do you Trust?
We are called to have a common purpose in what we do
-- The purpose is to worship, to love, and to celebrate Christ and share Him always
-- That is our challenge, mission, and it is STILL where we find ourselves today
Our testimony is meant to be shared … EVEN WHEN we are afraid to do so
-- What has God done? Not what have you done – all you’ve done is sinned
-- Focusing only on God is what is most important!!
Today, Festus determined that Paul should travel to Rome; so he was sent there
-- What we must see up front is a primary message for all believers
God directs the path of your life just as He did Paul’s; His interests are best!
-- Isaiah 55:8, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD.”
Suffering is NOT a new thing; neither is persecution; living for Him is commanded
-- John 15:18, “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you.”
Got it? Let’s dive into today’s text and follow Paul’s journey to Rome
Point 1 – The storms will rage (12-20)
Read Acts 27:12-20
What we see here is that Paul is on a journey, but the outcome is totally unknown
-- Today, most of us are on similar journeys and like Paul, we don’t know results
-- For some this causes great fear (few weeks ago); but why do we fear?
APP: We fear the things we cannot control because we enjoy control
-- Most important: WE MAKE lousy gods! We have no control; can’t satisfy
-- Our desires and needs and things we think fulfill won’t/can’t bring joy to us
-- Sure there is temporary joy, but there is nothing that is eternal about it
The same thing is happening here with Paul
-- Set sail without GPS; crude maps; no forecasts; and weather apps; just faith
-- Faith in what they cannot control nor can they see the outcome of
The journey we are on is much of the same and safety is NOT assured till glory
-- In the darkness (like on the open seas) there is hopelessness and uncertainty
-- There is a desire to make things better (v17, 18, 19 each shows men controlling)
-- APP: The only trust they should have had was in Who controlled the storm!
Matthew Henry, “Any man will rather make shipwreck of his goods than of his life; but many rather make shipwreck of faith and a good conscience, than of their goods. The means the sailors used did not succeed; but when sinners give up all hope of saving themselves, they are prepared to understand God's word, and to trust in his mercy through Jesus Christ.”
APP: Men always look for ways to change the outcome, but only God knows it!
Point 2 – God’s in Control (21-29)
Read Acts 27:21-29
Wisdom comes from following and trusting in God alone
-- Paul knew this, and so he is able to speak boldly, calmly, and with authority
V21 is the promise, and why? He knew that God called him to Rome!
-- He knew that God was faithful, that he was to go to Rome, and so he’s going
-- APP: Even through the horrible storm, God is still in control!
What’s most telling here is the hope Paul displays, even in the darkest times
-- Lost at sea, tossed about (seasick, exhausted, and hungry) he still believes
-- Challenge: Where are you? Do you still believe that God is working things out?
-- If not, let me encourage … LOOK AROUND! Phil 1:6 still stands true!
Go to Psalm 30; Read verses 1-12
-- Focus on v5: troubling times only last a short while
-- Focus on v6: in the darkness I know that you are still in control
-- Focus on v11: joy comes because God is STILL on His throne
-- Focus on v12: no matter what, the summation is that I WILL PRAISE Him!
APP: This is how Paul lives; because He knows the One who controls it all
Insert: “But Bro TJ, you just don’t know what I am dealing with …”
Point 3 – We need encouragement (30-38)
Read Acts 27:30-38
God, who destined that they go – is STILL in control of getting them there!
-- His words are not futile and so Paul stands strong on God’s promise!
-- v24 above … God’s promise is clear so why do we doubt Him? Control!
These men though are NOT believers, and they are ready to seek shelter
-- Even willing to destroy others so that they can be saved (lifeboat)
-- Paul’s charge to them is to let go, stop trying to control everything!!