Bible Society of South Africa

Keep going – 20 September 2022

By Ben Fourie

Bible text(s)

30For two years Paul lived in a place he rented for himself, and there he welcomed all who came to see him. 31He preached about the Kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ, speaking with all boldness and freedom.

Acts 28:30-31GNBOpen in Bible reader

The proclamation of the kingdom of God runs like the proverbial golden thread through the whole of the New Testament and, time and again, one sees that this kingdom is radically different from earthly kingdoms. The kingdom of God also brings a radical change in the lives of many people. Yesterday, we saw that Paul was fully involved in the persecution of the followers of Jesus in Jerusalem and now, only a decade later, we find him in Rome: “Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ”. What a change! This is the same Paul (Saul) that we read about in Acts 8:3 who “began to destroy the church”.

Paul came a long way from being a persecutor of the church to, probably, the most ardent proclaimer of the kingdom of God. He was not deterred by the many times that he was beaten, thrown into jail, having been shipwrecked, being hungry, cold and tired. He was trained to be a teacher of the law and a Pharisee, but after he met Jesus, he was willing to forgo all this when he realised that the true kingdom of God could not be found along that route.

This radical change of heart was not limited to Paul. Samaritans, Greeks, Roman soldiers and citizens, jailers, the Ethiopian official, Jews, highly placed women from the Gentiles – all their lives were completely transformed when they started believing in Jesus. They realised that his death on the cross, his resurrection and ascension into heaven was the foundation on which the kingdom of God was built, in the world and in the hearts of people.

After Paul met Jesus on the road to Damascus and saw how the kingdom of God transformed the lives of all these people, it was his great passion in life to do nothing else but proclaim the gospel. Now, after many wanderings, he ended up in house arrest in Rome. He never became dejected, but welcomed all who visited him and gave them the message of the kingdom of God. What an example to us all.

Prayer: Thank you dear Father that I have also met Jesus. Make me a willing proclaimer of the good news about him. Amen

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