Summary: It takes great effort to build up (edify) believers with the Word of God, both on the part of those who teach and those who learn. But it is worth it.
Worth the Effort
1, This week, I watched part of a White Sox baseball game from two weeks agon on youtube. It was nice to be able to fast forward and see the more interesting moments. Which brings on a joke.
2. Have you heard about the first baseball game in the Bible? In the big inning. Eve stole first, Adam stole second. Cain struck out Abel. The Giants and the Angels were rained out.
3. You have to know the first chapters of Genesis well to get this joke. Did you get the giants, the Nehpilim, and the Sons of God, the angels, in the above joke? I know....
4. Sometimes, when it comes to sharing or hearing jokes, we might ask, “Is it worth it?”
5. A German Shepherd can beat a skunk in a fight, but is it worth it? Probably not.
6. When it comes to pursuing God and building His kingdom, many people have decided it is not worth it. It takes too much effort, requires too many sacrifices, especially time and energy.
7. Paul the Apostle held the opposite opinion, It was worth all his efforts and more. He was out to make disciples, to reach people and see them mature in their faith and even become leaders.
Main Idea: It takes great effort to build up (edify) believers with the Word of God, both on the part of those who teach and those who learn. But it is worth it.
I. Paul Journeyed Throughout the Empire, Despite Fatigue and the DANGERS of Travel (1-6).
A. One of the places he visited was CORINTH.
Thomas Constable summarizes, The "three months" appear to have been the winter months
of A.D. 56-57. Paul probably spent most of this time in Corinth, where Gaius (Titius Justus?) was his host (Rom. 16:23; cf. Acts 18:7). There he wrote the Book of Romans as he anticipated visiting Rome. From Rome he planned to move farther west into Spain (Rom. 15:24). During his time in Macedonia and Achaia, Paul was also busy collecting the gift for the poor saints in Jerusalem (Rom. 15:26). He evidently had planned to travel on a ship from Cenchrea to Caesarea, and from there to Jerusalem, to celebrate one of the spring Jewish feasts there (vv. 6, 16). However, when he learned of the Jews' "plot" to kill him on the way, he changed his plans and decided to go to Jerusalem by way of "Macedonia" (cf.9:23, 29; 17:14; 23:12; 2 Cor. 11:32).
B. He planned his trip around the JEWISH FEASTS.
1. He celebrated PASSOVER (Unleavened Bread) with the Jewish community in Philippi.
2. He wanted to be in Jerusalem (temple courts) for PENTECOST.
C. He decided to make a land trip over a sea trip to avoid being THROWN OVERBOARD.
D. He meandered over Greece and Turkey to train, DEVELOP and influence the Christians in the right direction.
This is much of what church is supposed to be about. Unfortunately, over time, church became more of a spectator sport.
II. Paul Taught and the Believers EAGERLY Learned – to the Point of Exhaustion (7-12).
A. Note that they met on the FIRST day of the week and broke bread.
1. There is a difference between what we are commanded to do and what the early church did.
2. The New Testament commands believers to meet regularly, but does not stipulate on Sundays. Nonetheless, most of us follow they example of the early Christians by meeting on Sundays.
Commemorates resurrection, beginning of new creation, and giving God the first portion.
3. Probably a carry-in meal (love feast) followed by the Lord’s Supper. Did they eat first, listen to Paul, and then celebrate the Lord’s Supper after midnight? Did they eat twice? Or does the term refer sometimes to just eating?
B. Paul tried to CRAM in as much teaching as he could, while he was there.
C. Even the best teacher of the Word can LULL us asleep at times.
1. One of the deans at Moody during Founder’s Week
2. I think it is wrong to fault either Eutychus or Paul.
3. When people are motivated but tired, that is one thing; when someone is not motivated to learn the Word of God, that is indicative of a spiritual problem. A scolding will not fix that.
D. This young man was perhaps unharmed, but likely RESURRECTED.
E. Paul and believers CONVERSED until daybreak!
This is a description, not a prescription.
A rare occasion indeed to sit at the feet of the Apostle Paul.