Pastor Alex used the text in Acts 16:9-15 to show us how encompassing God’s love is. Last week we saw how Cornelius was let to faith in Christ and filled with the Holy Spirit. God meant for Gentiles to be included in His family. This week, we see Paul extending the love of Christ to Lydia, a gentile woman, who readily embraced Christ and then led her whole family to faith. Both Cornelius and Lydia wanted their loved ones to come to the saving knowledge of Christ. They wanted them to know the joy of being filled with the Holy Spirit and having a purpose greater than themselves. We see the God has not put limitations on His love and it cannot be contained.
Both Cornelius and Lydia brought their families to faith. That required an open heart and a willingness to risk their lives and reputations. The desire to see their loved ones come to know Christ surpassed any fears they may have had. Is that the same with you? Are you willing to ‘risk’ it to see your family come into the family of God? Here we see that Lydia and Cornelius were willing, and through their open hearts they were able to lead generations to come into the knowledge and love of God.
Pastor Alex directed us to 2 Corinthians 5:20. “We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God’. Lydia counted it a privilege to be Christ’s ambassador in her family and in her community. An Ambassador is a spokesperson, an official of the highest rank who is sent on a mission. The mission Lydia and Cornelius were sent on is the same one we are to embrace which, is to spread the good news of Christ, the gospel message. Do you need to hone your ambassador skills? Are you representing Jesus and speaking out for Him? I am reminded of our memory verse for this week from Romans 1:16-17. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. 17 For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: “The righteous will live by faith.” Are you willing to proclaim the gospel without being ashamed of it? Do you truly believe it contains the revelation from God, Christ, which allows us to live within His righteousness? If so, it is the best message yet. Hope, redemption, right living with God, what could be better? If so, who do you need to tell this week? You too can have an immeasurable impact for Christ right where you live: in your family, neighborhood, town and country.
The ruins at Philippi which are just over the hill from the stream where Paul and Lydia worshipped. Continue reading Acts 16 for further adventures of Paul and Silas at Philippi that landed them in jail and led to the conversion of the jailer and his family coming to know Christ, too.
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A collection of thoughts from our community