Acts 26-28

Storm Coming!

In Chapter 27 we read of the storm and shipwreck that Paul and his companions went through on their way to Rome. This is the fourth shipwreck that we know of that Paul went through.  Paul entered this ship as a prisoner. As they were making their way to Rome the winds were against them and they had a difficult time making headway. They knew that time was running out for safe travel with winter approaching so they decided to spend winter in a bigger harbor. Paul warned of the coming danger for the ship, cargo, and the lives of the people if they proceeded but his words were not heeded. Instead, they set out when a breeze came up thinking they had what they wanted, but soon the breeze turned into violent wind and they lost all control. They would have lost all hope had it not been for Paul encouraging them to stay with the ship and eat some food and telling them there was hope ahead. After 14 days in the storm the ship ran aground some 476 miles from where they had planned to go. During the fourteen days they drifted, Paul, the prisoner, became the trusted leader.

The Bible tells us that there is another storm coming. It is called the Great Tribulation. Christians know it is coming but we don’t know when. The world seems to be largely ignoring the message and life continues on as normal. Like Cinderella’s Ball we know that everything is going to change when the clocks strike 12, but the clocks have no hands. However, for the world, there will be a warning when the clock strikes.

I believe the first and most significant warning sign will be the rapture of the Church. Rapture means “caught up.”  Many people scoff at this, but remember, the one who warned of the coming storm also told us that the Church would one day be “caught up” to be with the Lord Jesus in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. We do not know when the rapture of the Church will happen so Christians need to be prepared and watching. Matthew 25:1-13

After the church is taken to be with the Lord, those who remain will think they have what they want. The antichrist will rise to power and attempt to lead the world but the world will find itself being driven along by God’s wrath. Many lives will be lost during this time. However, during this same time, there will be many turning to the Lord especially among the Jews. After 7 years of the Great Tribulation the Lord will return. The antichrist will be defeated and removed and the Jews will bring in the Most Holy, spoken of in Daniel 9:24. The Lord will be the King of Kings. As King, Jesus will set up the perfect Kingdom for 1000 years. It will be a time of perfect peace and prosperity that the world has never known. No longer will the Jews be despised and mocked. Instead, the world will exalt them and come to them wanting what they have. Of course, what they have is Jesus as their God and King.  

Paul sought and served the Lord through the storm. He was faithful and God raised him up in the eyes of the world around him. Even today, as we will read, Paul is still serving as God’s ambassador. The Church today is to warn the world of this coming storm, whether we are listened to or not. It doesn’t really matter that we don’t know the time or the date of our Lord’s coming for us. Our focus is to be on Jesus. He is our Lord and we are His ambassadors. We serve Him and He has given us a message to proclaim. What will He find us doing when He comes? Will He find us faithful? Matthew 24:36-51

Pastor Dave