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07/03/2019 - A SIGN FOR THE LOST

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And the natives showed us unusual kindness; for they kindled a fire and made us all welcome, because of the rain that was falling and because of the cold. Acts 28:2

If the apostle Paul did not live in the presence of God and did not receive guidance from the Lord about the tribulations that would come to him, he might have become a murmurer who is constantly at the feet of the Most High complaining about the problems. Many people do not know how to cooperate with God so that the Word reaches the lost and consequently, they miss great opportunities to bear good testimony.

In almost every place where Paul preached the Gospel, the power of the Lord manifested itself in an extraordinary way, healing the sick, cripples, and casting out demons. God showed Himself to the lost with the signs He did through the hands of the apostle. But in the midst of almost all those successes came the persecutions. He was even publicly flogged. However, his mood did not diminish; it increased more and more.

In the workings of miracles, there were always unbelieving and envious Jews, who caused people to stand up against Paul. However, he did not become frightened but he kept advancing in his mission. Finally, this great servant of God was taken into prison, in order to be presented before the Roman emperor. The king of Rome had to hear from him how much the Lord loved him and wanted to give him salvation.

At one point during the trip, the ship that was carrying Paul and the other prisoners ran aground near an island called Malta. Before that, the soldiers on board thought about killing the prisoners so they would not flee. But the love of God filled the heart of the captain, who, wishing to spare Paul´s life, did not agree with the idea of those soldiers. Those who knew how to swim threw themselves into the sea; others clung to boards and other debris. Thus Paul’s word was fulfilled – that no one would perish.

The inhabitants of that island were barbarians, but since the Lord takes good care of His own, the castaways were well received. Since it was cold and rainy, the natives lit a great fire for all to warm up. All was well until Paul went to get some sticks to throw them into the fire – then a viper, fleeing from the heat, bit his hand.

Looking at the apostle, the barbarians began to say that he was a murderer, for even though he escaped from the sea, justice would not keep him alive. They believed he would swell and fall dead in a few hours. However, the apostle showed what it is to be with the Lord: he shook his hand over the fire while he was stung, and the serpent fell on the fire and died. Paul simply did not fear!

Time passed, and the worst did not happen to him. Therefore, he was considered a god in that region. Paul still took the opportunity to pray for the father of the leader of the island who was sick, and God healed him. Thus, the people in that region that were sick were healed. The Lord´s plan is good and perfect!

In Christ, with love,

R. R. Soares

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Faithful God! You give us a lesson through this message. Paul did not grumble or accuse You of not taking good care of Your people. He only fulfilled Your calling, even though he went through so many unpleasant moments.

Such beahvior teaches us to trust You, even though the night is very dark and the chances of saving us are zero. You will pull us out of the evil bonds. We thank You for your plan!

When we obey You, barbarians become human, violent become affectionate, and the bad become good people. There is no way to pay for what You teach us, but we can ask You to continue to use us in Your work. Amen!!


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and Serug lived after he begat Nahor two hundred years, and begat sons and daughters.
(Genesis 11:23)


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