Thoughts and Reflections
Today we read Paul’s actions in Troas and how they reflect the actions of Jesus. Paul knows that hardship and imprisonment await him soon, but he keeps going on because serving God is what he was called to do. We, too, will encounter obstacles. Just as Paul faced those following Jesus, we will as well. Paul tells the people that they will never see him again. He loves them and shows his love many times. The people love him back and the idea of losing him is painful.
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!
1 When the disturbance was over, Paul sent for the disciples and, after speaking words of encouragement to them, said good — bye and set out for Macedonia.
2 On his way through those areas he said many words of encouragement to them and then made his way into Greece,
3 where he spent three months. He was leaving by ship for Syria when a plot organised against him by the Jews made him decide to go back by way of Macedonia.
4 He was accompanied by Sopater, son of Pyrrhus, who came from Beroea; Aristarchus and Secundus who came from Thessalonica; Gaius from Derbe, and Timothy, as well as Tychicus and Trophimus who were from Asia.
5 They all went on to Troas where they waited for us.
6 We ourselves left Philippi by ship after the days of Unleavened Bread and joined them five days later at Troas, where we stayed for a week.
7 On the first day of the week we met for the breaking of bread. Paul was due to leave the next day, and he preached a sermon that went on till the middle of the night.
8 A number of lamps were lit in the upstairs room where we were assembled,
9 and as Paul went on and on, a young man called Eutychus who was sitting on the window-sill grew drowsy and was overcome by sleep and fell to the ground three floors below. He was picked up dead.
10 Paul went down and stooped to clasp the boy to him, saying, ‘There is no need to worry, there is still life in him.’
11 Then he went back upstairs where he broke the bread and ate and carried on talking till he left at daybreak.
12 They took the boy away alive, and were greatly encouraged.
13 We were now to go on ahead by sea, so we set sail for Assos, where we were to take Paul on board; this was what he had arranged, for he wanted to go overland.
14 When he rejoined us at Assos we took him aboard and went on to Mitylene.
15 The next day we sailed from there and arrived opposite Chios. The second day we touched at Samos and, after stopping at Trogyllium, made Miletus the next day.
16 Paul had decided to pass wide of Ephesus so as to avoid spending time in Asia, since he was anxious to be in Jerusalem, if possible, for the day of Pentecost.
17 From Miletus he sent for the elders of the church of Ephesus.
18 When they arrived he addressed these words to them: ‘You know what my way of life has been ever since the first day I set foot among you in Asia,
19 how I have served the Lord in all humility, with all the sorrows and trials that came to me through the plots of the Jews.
20 I have not hesitated to do anything that would be helpful to you; I have preached to you and instructed you both in public and in your homes,
21 urging both Jews and Greeks to turn to God and to believe in our Lord Jesus.
22 ‘And now you see me on my way to Jerusalem in captivity to the Spirit; I have no idea what will happen to me there,
23 except that the Holy Spirit, in town after town, has made it clear to me that imprisonment and persecution await me.
24 But I do not place any value on my own life, provided that I complete the mission the Lord Jesus gave me — to bear witness to the good news of God’s grace.
25 ‘I now feel sure that none of you among whom I have gone about proclaiming the kingdom will ever see my face again.
26 And so on this very day I swear that my conscience is clear as far as all of you are concerned,
27 for I have without faltering put before you the whole of God’s purpose.
28 ‘Be on your guard for yourselves and for all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you the guardians, to feed the Church of Godwhich he bought with the blood of his own Son.
29 ‘I know quite well that when I have gone fierce wolves will invade you and will have no mercy on the flock.
30 Even from your own ranks there will be men coming forward with a travesty of the truth on their lips to induce the disciples to follow them.
31 So be on your guard, remembering how night and day for three years I never slackened in counselling each one of you with tears.
32 And now I commend you to God and to the word of his grace that has power to build you up and to give you your inheritance among all the sanctified.
33 ‘I have never asked anyone for money or clothes;
34 you know for yourselves that these hands of mine earned enough to meet my needs and those of my companions.
35 By every means I have shown you that we must exert ourselves in this way to support the weak, remembering the words of the LordJesus, who himself said, “There is more happiness in giving than in receiving.” ‘
36 When he had finished speaking he knelt down with them all and prayed.
37 By now they were all in tears; they put their arms round Paul’s neck and kissed him;
38 what saddened them most was his saying they would never see his face again. Then they escorted him to the ship.
2 Corinthians 3
1 Are we beginning to commend ourselves to you afresh — as though we needed, like some others, to have letters of commendation either to you or from you?
2 You yourselves are our letter, written in our hearts, that everyone can read and understand;
3 and it is plain that you are a letter from Christ, entrusted to our care, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God; not on stone tablets but on the tablets of human hearts.
4 Such is the confidence we have through Christ in facing God;
5 it is not that we are so competent that we can claim any credit for ourselves; all our competence comes from God.
6 He has given us the competence to be ministers of a new covenant, a covenant which is not of written letters, but of the Spirit; for the written letters kill, but the Spirit gives life.
7 Now if the administering of death, engraved in letters on stone, occurred in such glory that the Israelites could not look Moses steadily in the face, because of its glory, transitory though this glory was,
8 how much more will the ministry of the Spirit occur in glory!
9 For if it is glorious to administer condemnation, to administer saving justice is far richer in glory.
10 Indeed, what was once considered glorious has lost all claim to glory, by contrast with the glory which transcends it.
11 For if what was transitory had any glory, how much greater is the glory of that which lasts for ever.
12 With a hope like this, we can speak with complete fearlessness;
13 not like Moses who put a veil over his face so that the Israelites should not watch the end of what was transitory.
14 But their minds were closed; indeed, until this very day, the same veil remains over the reading of the Old Testament: it is not lifted, for only in Christ is it done away with.
15 As it is, to this day, whenever Moses is read, their hearts are covered with a veil,
16 and this veil will not be taken away till they turn to the Lord.
17 Now this Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
18 And all of us, with our unveiled faces like mirrors reflecting the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the image that we reflect in brighter and brighter glory; this is the working of the Lord who is the Spirit.
2 Corinthians 4
1 Such by God’s mercy is our ministry, and therefore we do not waver
2 but have renounced all shameful secrecy. It is not our way to be devious, or to falsify the word of God; instead, in God’s sight we commend ourselves to every human being with a conscience by showing the truth openly.
3 If our gospel seems to be veiled at all, it is so to those who are on the way to destruction,
4 the unbelievers whose minds have been blinded by the god of this world, so that they cannot see shining the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.
5 It is not ourselves that we are proclaiming, but Christ Jesus as the Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.
6 It is God who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness,’ that has shone into our hearts to enlighten them with the knowledge of God’s glory, the glory on the face of Christ.
7 But we hold this treasure in pots of earthenware, so that the immensity of the power is God’s and not our own.
8 We are subjected to every kind of hardship, but never distressed; we see no way out but we never despair;
9 we are pursued but never cut off; knocked down, but still have some life in us;
10 always we carry with us in our body the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus, too, may be visible in our body.
11 Indeed, while we are still alive, we are continually being handed over to death, for the sake of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus, too, may be visible in our mortal flesh.
12 In us, then, death is at work; in you, life.
13 But as we have the same spirit of faith as is described in scripture — I believed and therefore I spoke -we, too, believe and therefore we, too, speak,
14 realising that he who raised up the Lord Jesus will raise us up with Jesus in our turn, and bring us to himself — and you as well.
15 You see, everything is for your benefit, so that as grace spreads, so, to the glory of God, thanksgiving may also overflow among more and more people.
16 That is why we do not waver; indeed, though this outer human nature of ours may be falling into decay, at the same time our inner human nature is renewed day by day.
17 The temporary, light burden of our hardships is earning us for ever an utterly incomparable, eternal weight of glory,
18 since what we aim for is not visible but invisible. Visible things are transitory, but invisible things eternal.
2 Corinthians 5
1 For we are well aware that when the tent that houses us on earth is folded up, there is a house for us from God, not made by human hands but everlasting, in the heavens.
2 And in this earthly state we do indeed groan,
3 longing to put on our heavenly home over the present one; if indeed we are to be found clothed rather than stripped bare.
4 Yes, indeed, in this present tent, we groan under the burden, not that we want to be stripped of our covering, but because we want to be covered with a second garment on top, so that what is mortal in us may be swallowed up by life.
5 It is God who designed us for this very purpose, and he has given us the Spirit as a pledge.
6 We are always full of confidence, then, realising that as long as we are at home in the body we are exiled from the Lord,
7 guided by faith and not yet by sight;
8 we are full of confidence, then, and long instead to be exiled from the body and to be at home with the Lord.
9 And so whether at home or exiled, we make it our ambition to please him.
10 For at the judgement seat of Christ we are all to be seen for what we are, so that each of us may receive what he has deserved in the body, matched to whatever he has done, good or bad.
11 And so it is with the fear of the Lord always in mind that we try to win people over. But God sees us for what we are, and I hope your consciences do too.
12 Again we are saying this not to commend ourselves to you, but simply to give you the opportunity to take pride in us, so that you may have an answer for those who take pride in appearances and not inner reality.
13 If we have been unreasonable, it was for God; if reasonable, for you.
14 For the love of Christ overwhelms us when we consider that if one man died for all, then all have died;
15 his purpose in dying for all humanity was that those who live should live not any more for themselves, but for him who died and was raised to life.
16 From now onwards, then, we will not consider anyone by human standards: even if we were once familiar with Christ according to human standards, we do not know him in that way any longer.
17 So for anyone who is in Christ, there is a new creation: the old order is gone and a new being is there to see.
18 It is all God’s work; he reconciled us to himself through Christ and he gave us the ministry of reconciliation.
19 I mean, God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not holding anyone’s faults against them, but entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.
20 So we are ambassadors for Christ; it is as though God were urging you through us, and in the name of Christ we appeal to you to be reconciled to God.
21 For our sake he made the sinless one a victim for sin, so that in him we might become the uprightness of God.
25 The covetous provokes disputes, whoever trusts in Yahweh will prosper.
26 Whoever trusts his own wit is a fool, anyone whose ways are wise will be safe.
27 No one who gives to the poor will ever go short, but whoever closes his eyes will have curses in plenty.
28 When the wicked are in the ascendant, people take cover, but when they perish, the upright multiply.