Live Another Day
If you’re reading this, you have lived another day.
Before reading this, it probably didn’t surprise you all that much. You expected to be alive today.
Sometimes I think it would be good if living another day surprised us a little more. We should see the arrival of a new day as a gift. That’s certainly what the apostle Paul did, because he didn’t expect to live another day.
Paul’s Narrow Escape
Paul was in trial in Jerusalem, before the Sanhedrin, awaiting the inevitable sentence of death. The Sanhedrin was divided bitterly between two parties, the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and the one issue which divided them was the resurrection. Paul, without mentioning Jesus, claimed truthfully that he was on trial because of his belief in the resurrection. Suddenly, Paul’s trial became a battle between these two parties: tempers turned violent, and the Roman tribune had to step in and whisk Paul away for his safety.
Paul lived another day.
An ambush was planned to kill Paul as he travelled, a defenseless prisoner. But Paul’s nephew overheard the plans and warned the Roman tribune. The tribune might not have cared, but instead he ordered 200 soldiers, 200 spearmen and 70 mounted horses – a total of 470 men – to protect Paul as he traveled.
Paul lived another day.
We’ve had an aborted trial and, now, a failed ambush. What’s happening? That’s the question Luke, the author of the book of Acts, wants his readers to ask.
Why does Paul keep evading his enemies to live another day?
Because God had plans for Paul.
God’s plan was for Paul to be a witness for him in Rome. That’s the reason for living another day. It’s the same for us now, as it was for Paul then.
Death is the only certainty in an otherwise uncertain world. Why aren’t we more surprised, astonished, or eternally grateful when we wake up in the morning? We should always be surprised when we live another day.
The Lord gave Paul another day to live so he could testify about the facts he had seen about him. In the same way for us, we should use each new day we have to be witnesses for him.
Called to Witness
A witness is someone who’s seen something and tells somebody about it. As Christians, we are witnesses who have seen the greatest thing of all, the newness of life in the resurrected Christ, and we need to tell somebody.
Why else would God not just take us to our eternal home the moment after we first confess Christ as Lord? Because he’s called us to be witnesses to the people who don’t know about the resurrection.
Witnessing can be intimidating. What if our friends put us on trial? What if they ambush us? What if we get cut off from the people we care about.
There is good news! God knows our frame. He knows what frightens us, and he knows we worry about the outcomes. He’s given us a sneak-preview of our pre-ordained outcome! He’s given us the hope of the resurrection of the dead – the assurance of eternal life.
We’re heaven-bound and nothing can stop us. Armed with this spectacular hope, we shouldn’t worry about a thing! We should be eternally grateful for living each day and spend it telling somebody about what we have seen in our crucified Lord Jesus Christ.
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