Scripture: Acts 17

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READ and STUDY the WORD

In Thessalonica

Acts 17:1-9 (KJV) Now when they (Paul, Silas and Timothy) had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where was a synagogue of the Jews: And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three sabbath days reasoned with them out of the scriptures, Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.  And some of them believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas; and of the devout Greeks a great multitude, and of the chief women not a few.  But the Jews which believed not, moved with envy, took unto them certain lewd fellows of the baser sort, and gathered a company, and set all the city on an uproar, and assaulted the house of Jason, and sought to bring them out to the people.  And when they found them not, they drew Jason and certain brethren unto the rulers of the city, crying, These that have turned the world upside down are come hither also; Whom Jason hath received: and these all do contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, one Jesus.  And they troubled the people and the rulers of the city, when they heard these things.  And when they had taken security of Jason, and of the other, they let them go. 

Questions and Answers:

1. To what city did Paul, Silas and Timothy come and what did Paul do upon arriving there (Acts 17:1-3)? Paul, Silas and Timothy came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews: Paul went into the synagogue and on three Sabbath days he reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and proving that the Christ had to suffer and rise from the dead. He said the Jesus he was proclaiming to them was the Christ. 

2.  How did the people respond (Acts 17:4-5a)? Some of the people believed, and consorted with Paul and Silas. But some of the Jews were jealous; so they rounded up some bad characters from the marketplace and formed a mob.  And started a riot in the city. 

3. Why did a mob go to Jason’s house (Acts 17:5b)? This mob rushed to Jason’s house in search of Paul and Silas in order to bring them out to the crowd.

4. What did the mob do to Jason and others (Acts 17:6-7)? The mob dragged Jason and some other brothers before the city officials.  The mob accused Jason of welcoming into his home, Paul and Silas who were turning the world upside down.  They were all accused of defying Caesar’s decrees.

5. What did Jason and the others have to do (Acts 8-9)? Jason and those hauled in with him had to post bond before they were released.

In Berea

Acts 17:10-15 (KJV) 10 And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.  11 These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.  12 Therefore many of them believed; also of honourable women which were Greeks, and of men, not a few.  13 But when the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached of Paul at Berea, they came thither also, and stirred up the people.  14 And then immediately the brethren sent away Paul to go as it were to the sea: but Silas and Timotheus (Timothy) abode there still.  15 And they that conducted Paul brought him unto Athens: and receiving a commandment unto Silas and Timotheus for to come to him with all speed, they departed.

Questions and Answers:

1. Where were Paul and Silas sent and what did they enter (Acts 17:10)? The brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea.  And Paul and Silas went into the synagogue of the Jews. 

2. How did the people respond (Acts 17:11)? These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.

3. Who believed (Acts 17:12)? Many of the Jews believed, as did also a number of prominent Greek woman and many Greek men.

4. What did the Jews of Thessalonica do (Acts 17:13)? When the Jews of Thessalonica had knowledge that the word of God was preached by Paul at Berea, they went and stirred up the people. 

5. What did the brethren do (Acts 17:14-15)? Immediately the brethren sent away Paul to go as it were to the sea. Silas and Timotheus stayed at Berea.  The men who escorted Paul brought him to Athens and then left with instructions for Silas and Timothy to join him as soon as possible.

In Athens

Acts 17:16-34 (KJV) 16 Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him, when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry.  17 Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him.  18 Then certain philosophers of the Epicureans, and of the Stoicks, encountered him. And some said, What will this babbler say? other some, He seemeth to be a setter forth of strange gods: because he preached unto them Jesus, and the resurrection.  19 And they took him, and brought him unto Areopagus, saying, May we know what this new doctrine, whereof thou speakest, is?  20 For thou bringest certain strange things to our ears: we would know therefore what these things mean.  21 (For all the Athenians and strangers which were there spent their time in nothing else, but either to tell, or to hear some new thing.)  22 Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.  23 For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, To The Unknown God. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.  24 God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; 25 Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; 26 And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation; 27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us: 28 For in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also His offspring.  29 Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device.  30 And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent: 31 Because He hath appointed a day, in the which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom He hath ordained; whereof He hath given assurance unto all men, in that He hath raised Him from the dead.  32 And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said, We will hear thee again of this matter.  33 So Paul departed from among them.  34 Howbeit certain men clave unto him, and believed: among the which was Dionysius the Areopagite, and a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

Questions and Answers:

1. What did Paul find in Athens (Acts 17:16)? Paul was distressed to find the city was full of idols.

2. What did Paul do (Acts 17:17? Paul disputed with the Jews in the synagogue and with the devout people in the market place daily.

3. Who else did Paul encounter (Acts 17:18-21)? A group of Epicurean and Stoic philosophers began to confront Paul. And then took him to Areopagus and asked him to telling them about this new doctrine of which he was speaking.

4.What did Paul say about the men of Athens (Acts 17:22-23)? Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.  For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, To The Unknown God. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.

5. What did Paul say about his God (Acts 17:24-28)? Paul said, “God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;  That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us:  For in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also His offspring.”

6. What did Paul say about (us) mankind (Acts 17:29-31)? Paul said we are the offspring of God, that we shouldn’t think He is like gold or silver or stone from which idols are made by man.  Paul said at one time God overlooked such ignorance, but now He commands all people everywhere to repent. Paul said God has set a day when He will judge the world with justice by the man (Jesus) who He has appointed. Paul said God has given proof of this to all men by raising Jesus from the dead.

7. How did the people respond to hearing about the resurrection of the dead (Acts 17:32)? When the people heard about the resurrection of the dead, some mocked: and others said they wanted to hear more.   

8. Did anyone become a follower (Acts 17:33)? A few men became followers of Paul and believed.

HEAR the WORD

Acts 17:34 (KJV) Howbeit certain men clave unto him (Paul), and believed: …

Acts 17:34 (NIV) A few men became followers of Paul and believed. …

Acts 17:34 (AMP) 34 But some men joined him and believed; …

MEDITATE on the WORD

Ponder the above verses.  My thoughts: When I first saw the KJV verse I thought these men were “following” Paul as someone would follow Jesus.  But as I read other translations, I realized they became part of those who were followers of Jesus.  Paul sometimes traveled with a group of people just as Jesus did.  But Paul was teaching others about our Savior, Jesus. 

MEMORIZE the WORD

Acts 17:28 (NIV) For in Him (God) we live and move and have our being …

LOVE and LIVE the WORD

Though we may have Bible teachers we love, they are not to be worshipped. Only God is.  Acts 17:24 (NIV) The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. 

TEACH and SHARE the WORD

We should teach others the Acts 17:28 verse too.

PRAY the WORD

Lord, I pray we will proclaim Jesus as the Christ (Acts 17:3).  Lord, I pray we will courageously stand up for those who are teaching and preaching the true gospel, no matter the personal cost (Acts 17:9).  Lord, I pray we will receive Your Word and eagerly examine Your Word daily (Acts 17:11).  Lord, I pray we will be concerned and turn to prayer when we see people who are worshipping other gods and idols (Acts 17:16). Lord, I pray we will share the good news about Your Son, Christ Jesus (Acts 17:18). Lord, I pray we will understand who You truly are and share what we learn with others (Acts 17:24-31).  In Christ Jesus’ name I pray.  AMEN.

ENCOURAGEMENT

“May you and I learn and share all we can about God.” <>< Dona