In Your Bible: Acts Chapters 23, 24 and 25
After the encounter with the high priest at the council, Paul was imprisoned overnight for his own safety. Then he traveled to Caesarea under heavy guard. The apostles in Jerusalem didn’t visit Paul in his cell but the Lord did. I believe, you probably do too, the Lord comforted Paul in prison all this time.
Conspiracy Against Paul
However, the next day the Jews worked up a plot against Paul. They took a solemn oath that they would neither eat nor drink until they had killed him. Over forty of them ritually bound themselves to this murder pact and presented themselves to the high priests and religious leaders (Acts 23:12 Message).
Hearty Protection for Travel to Caesarea
That evening soldiers (200), spearmen (200), mounted troops (70) plus horses for Paul to ride were readied for the trip to bring Paul before Governor Felix in Caesarea. Quite a statement about protecting a Roman citizen from raucous Jerusalem rebels.
Before the Governors
However, in Caesarea Paul was jailed again until his accusers arrived five days later. Ananias and the other accusers arrived and presented their case after which Paul defended himself in a calm and logical manner.
Governor Felix. . . knew far more about the Way than he let on, and could have settled the case then and there. But uncertain of his best move politically, he played for time (Acts 24:21a Message).
Then . . . a few days later Felix and his wife, Drusilla, who was Jewish, sent for Paul and listened to him talk about a life of believing in Jesus Christ. As Paul continued to insist on right relations with God and his people, about a life of moral discipline and the coming Judgment . . . (Acts 24:24,25a Message).
Paul was grateful to be placed under house arrest, yet it was two more years before the next governor arrived! Then Paul was imprisoned, merely for appearances, at the arrival of Governor Porcius Festus. The new governor held court and Paul declared his innocence with an appeal to Caesar for his ruling. This was granted.
I believe, you probably do too, the Lord comforted Paul in prison all this time.
Prayer: Father, I know you are with me and know all my weakness and strengths – for that I am grateful every day. Your timing blesses me in ways I’ll not even know until eternity – WOW.
Questions: How much time in these three chapters (23, 24, 25) did Paul spend in prison or house arrest? If adversity is a builder of Christ like character, then how much more is holding on through unjust accusations? Are there additional adversities believers encounter daily? Name a few.