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Paul Arrives in Rome (Acts 28:11~22)
11 After three months we put out to sea in a ship that had wintered in the island. It was an Alexandrian ship with the figurehead of the twin gods Castor and Pollux.
12 We put in at Syracuse and stayed there three days.
13 From there we set sail and arrived at Rhegium. The next day the south wind came up, and on the following day we reached Puteoli.
14 There we found some brothers who invited us to spend a week with them. And so we came to Rome.
15 The brothers there had heard that we were coming, and they traveled as far as the Forum of Appius and the Three Taverns to meet us. At the sight of these men Paul thanked God and was encouraged.
16 When we got to Rome, Paul was allowed to live by himself, with a soldier to guard him.
17 Three days later he called together the leaders of the Jews. When they had assembled, Paul said to them: "My brothers, although I have done nothing against our people or against the customs of our ancestors, I was arrested in Jerusalem and handed over to the Romans.
18 They examined me and wanted to release me, because I was not guilty of any crime deserving death.
19 But when the Jews objected, I was compelled to appeal to Caesar -- not that I had any charge to bring against my own people.
20 For this reason I have asked to see you and talk with you. It is because of the hope of Israel that I am bound with this chain."
21 They replied, "We have not received any letters from Judea concerning you, and none of the brothers who have come from there has reported or said anything bad about you.
22 But we want to hear what your views are, for we know that people everywhere are talking against this sect."
Encouraging Response (28:11–22)
After a storm, a shipwreck, and a three-month detour in Malta, Paul is finally back on his way to Rome. During his travels, Paul is able to fellowship with other Christians who are eager to meet with him and his companions. Some even travel long distances to see him, and Paul praises God and feels encouraged by them. Paul also decides to meet with the Jewish leaders in Rome so that he can explain to them why he has been arrested. He tells them that he is innocent, and they give an encouraging response. Not only have they not heard anything bad about him, but they also want to hear more from Paul about his views. Even under house arrest, Paul is granted another opportunity to share the Gospel with those around him.
- When has a fellow believer encouraged you during a difficult time? Why was this encouragement so important for you?
A letter to God
In Malaysia, people are classified as Malay by the federal constitution if they speak Bahasa Malaysia, adhere to Malay customs, and follow Islam. One of the greatest contemporary problems is the breakdown of the family. Pray that the Malay may know reconciliation to God through Christ and restoration of the family.
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