BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 7, Day 4: Acts 14:19-20a & 2 Timothy 3:10-17

Summary of passages:  Acts 14:19-20a:  Some Jews Paul had angered in Antioch and Iconium followed him and stoned him to death.  But the disciples gathered around Paul (presumably praying) and Paul got right back up and went back into Lystra.

2 Timothy 3:10-17:  Paul tells Timothy he knows Paul’s teaching, purpose, faith, patience, love, endurance, persecutions, and sufferings for the Lord.  The Lord rescued him from all.  He tells Timothy everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (probably warning him to expect persecution himself) while evil men will continue to do evil.  Paul urges Timothy to continue in his work and in knowing the Scriptures so he may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

Questions:

10)  I thought God performed another miracle and this guy doesn’t give up.  I also chuckled at the translation:  they stoned him and left him for dead but then he got up and went right back into the city.  I pictured him like a superhero I guess:  pummeled but gets right back up–all thanks to God.

11a)  Timothy

b)  I’m assuming we’re talking fruits of the Spirit here from Galatians 4:22 which are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  He definitely got some patience to return to the people who just killed him or tried to kill him.  Faithfulness to continue his calling.  Self-control to not retaliate.  Love when he meets Timothy.

c)  Personal Questions.  My answer: To not give up in the hard times and to keep persevering despite the fact I don’t feel like it.  To get up even when knocked down because God is with you, picking you up.

12)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Yes, it could be.  We don’t know since we’re not told when Paul had his vision but he could have had it when he was on the verge of death.  Many people report spiritual experiences on the verge of death or after having died and then been resusitated by God.  God could have taken both his body or his spirit to Heaven, spoke to him, and then returned him to life.

When Stephen was being stoned (Acts 7) he sees Jesus.

Galatians 6:17 Paul says he “bears on my body the marks of Jesus.”  This could be from this incident as well as I imagine being stoned leaves some nasty scars.

Conclusions:  Very applicable today.  Paul was persecuted over and over again and yet he still got back up, dusted himself off, and went back to work for God.  We need to have the same attitude for our work for God.

2 Timothy 3:12  “In fact, everyone who wants to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted…”

I loved this!  It makes me feel better when I’m attacked here in this forum.

Personal Note:  Yesterday, I was doing Lesson 7, Day 3 on the computer when I just stopped and thought Why am I doing this?  It was bringing me no joy whatsoever.  So I closed my computer and started writing my novel.  I worked on this novel for about 2 hours.  It brings me great joy when I do.

BSF this year has taken a huge amount of my time.  I have often wondered and thought I need to quit and move on with my life.  But I keep at it.  Keep going.  Despite the lack of joy I may feel at the time.  Your encouraging words do help and I thank you all for every comment and email you send with your thanks.

But ever since I’ve moved I’ve struggled with finding joy in my personal work.  Nothing I do right now brings me joy:  writing my column, this blog.  My novels do but because they are so far away from impacting anyone discouragement is never far away.

I am praying hard to find what is causing this in my life for I know it has nothing to do with the work itself.  It is something else.  I believe I know what it is and I am praying hard for God to rectify it in my life.

I am looking forward to a much needed break here without any Internet and computer so I can just sit, be, and listen.  Praying soon I get some joy back that I had last year.