Psalms 96,97,98; Acts 17:1-15

Paul goes to Thessalonica.

As was Paul’s custom, he went to the synagogue service, and for three Sabbaths in a row he used the Scriptures to reason with the people.

Later, he travels to Berea.

11 And the people of Berea were more open-minded than those in Thessalonica, and they listened eagerly to Paul’s message. They searched the Scriptures day after day to see if Paul and Silas were teaching the truth.

He tells them what earth, sea, fields, and crops already knew.

Psalm 96:

11 Let the heavens be glad, and the earth rejoice!
Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise!
12 Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy!
Let the trees of the forest rustle with praise

Life in exclamation: Jesus is Lord.

Sing to the Lord; praise his name.
Each day proclaim the good news that he saves.
Publish his glorious deeds among the nations.
Tell everyone about the amazing things he does.

Some people have an undeniable gift for evangelism.

I got to know a woman recently who is gifted this way. Nearly every story she tells, she will tell you whether or not the people in it are believers.

“How do you know if they are believers?” I asked. “Do you ask them?”

“Yes,” she said. “Because I may not ever see them again.”

Like a crop in the field, her love bursts with joy.

I am not so bold in my daily travels, like her, or Paul. But I do hope that my love for Him is palpable and evident in how I live–like the rustle of a tree in the forest, or the crashing of waves against the shore … a life that can’t contain praise.

But some of the Jews were jealous, so they gathered some troublemakers from the marketplace to form a mob and start a riot. They attacked the home of Jason, searching for Paul and Silas so they could drag them out to the crowd. Not finding them there, they dragged out Jason and some of the other believers instead and took them before the city council. “Paul and Silas have caused trouble all over the world,” they shouted, “and now they are here disturbing our city, too. And Jason has welcomed them into his home. They are all guilty of treason against Caesar, for they profess allegiance to another king, named Jesus.”

Lord, what does my life speak of you? Who do I resemble: the world or you? Would someone have to ask me if I’m a believer? Would they notice me in the crowd?

Courtney (66books365)

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2 Comments

Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan

2 responses to “Psalms 96,97,98; Acts 17:1-15

  1. The tree is known by its fruit, right? I don’t plan to start judging who is or is not saved, but as a sister in Christ, if I’m not acting like one, someone please tell me!

  2. I’m certainly not trying to go there: guessing someone’s salvation by how they lived. I spent almost 15 years loving the Lord, but not wanting to address sin in my life. If someone ever challenged the validity of my salvation based on my lifestyle, I would have been fierce to say my love and trust (for him) was true. Friends and I have discussed loved ones who died, and one might inquire, “Was he/she a Christian?” and for some, we didn’t know. Even unbelievers are good people. (And even believers do bad things.) But I never think of a prayer or thanks uttered, not ever a mention of His name–not even crops can hold back; Jesus says even the rocks will cry out. Had I died 14 years ago, I know for sure where I would go. I just want to live like there’s no doubt, singing his praise, blessing his name. I might not always be fruitful. Maybe not even often some days … But in my weakness and my words, I hope I’m always pointing to God! 🙂

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