unwanted down time
Acts 23:23-35 (JDV)
Acts 23:23 He called for two of his centurions and said, “Get two hundred soldiers ready with seventy cavalry and two hundred spearmen to go to Caesarea at nine tonight.
Acts 23:24 Also provide mounts for Paul to ride and bring him safely to Felix the governor.”
Acts 23:25 He wrote the following letter:
Acts 23:26 Claudius Lysias, To the most excellent governor Felix: Greetings.
Acts 23:27 When this man had been seized by the Jews and was about to be taken away by them, I arrived with my troops and rescued him because I learned that he is a Roman citizen.
Acts 23:28 Wanting to know the charge they were accusing him of, I brought him down before their Sanhedrin.
Acts 23:29 I found out that the accusations were concerning questions of their law, and that there was no charge that merited death or imprisonment.
Acts 23:30 When I was informed that there was a plot against the man, I sent him to you right away. I also directed his accusers to state their case against him in your presence.
Acts 23:31 So the soldiers picked up Paul during the night and brought him to Antipatris as they were ordered.
Acts 23:32 The next day, they returned to the barracks, allowing the cavalry to go on with him.
Acts 23:33 When these men entered Caesarea and delivered the letter to the governor, they also presented Paul to him.
Acts 23:34 After he read it, he asked what province he was from. When he learned he was from Cilicia,
Acts 23:35 he said, “I will give you a hearing whenever your accusers also get here.” He ordered that he be kept in Herod’s palace.
unwanted down time
David Young Jr. wrote “In the midst of trial, the best thing to do is to be faithful. God has not abandoned us, and will see to it that in the final assessment, true justice will be carried out. His children, wrongly accused, will be vindicated. He alone will be the final judge. In the meantime, consider the possibility that God is granting you an opportunity to share the gospel with one who is doing you wrong. You never know who it is that needs to hear the message of Jesus.”*
Paul was imprisoned for a long time although it was admitted that he had no charge against him that warranted the detainment. But God used that down time to give the gospel to his captors.
Lord, we trust you to use our unwanted down time for your purposes.
* Maranatha Daily Devotional “God Cares for his Own” Wednesday, January 20, 2016.