Sunday: 12th May, 2019
Reference text: Acts 13:14,43-52
Acts 13:45 But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.
Competition seems to be an integral part of the fabric of existence: there is competition for food, for territory, for survival, for trophies and so forth. Thus, for those who manage to guarantee some form of security when they acquire that which everyone else craves, they prepare to defend these at whatever cost. Simply, they won’t sit back for another to push them off top spot, not without a fight.
This is exactly what happened with Paul and Barnabas in Antioch. The Jews were described as ‘jealous’ because these two unknown lads had come into their town and were winning the people over to themselves with what they were teaching. Now, while we are inclined to seeing that jealousy fuelled their decision to use crafty methods to kick Paul and Barnabas out of their town, there was more at play than just that emotion.
It appeared the very prospect of losing their status as ‘top dogs’ to some ‘nobodies’ was the deciding factor in establishing the degree of opposition they offered. Evidently, blinded by the quest for power and status, even the word of God, which they themselves proclaimed in the synagogues; lost its place amongst them.
Therefore, I ask: Are our stories any different? Does the Word of God have any place in our lives as we pursue power, wealth, recognition, status and ‘growth’?
Let us think about these today.