I. "AFTER THE UPROAR CEASED"
A. It is wrong to think that the world and the church can co-exist peaceably.
1. The only way that the church can be worldly friendly is to compromise its message.
2. James wrote, JAM 4:4
: Know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.
3. Paul warned against being unequally yoked with unbelievers. He asked, "What fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion has light with darkness? What agreement has Christ with Satan? and what part has he who believes with an infidel?"
a. The world is governed by Satan, the church is governed by Christ.
b. You cannot bring the two together peaceably except by compromise, which God does not allow.
4. In the Old Testament we find the story of the king of Judah, Jehoshaphat who was a godly king, but he went up to Israel to visit Ahab, who was one of the most ungodly kings of all.
a. We read that Jehoshaphat joined affinity with Ahab, he went up to visit him and Ahab said to him, "Will you go with me to battle at Ramoth-gilead?" and Jehoshaphat answered, "I am as you, and my people as your people in the war."
b. When he returned to Jerusalem after the disastrous defeat in which king Ahab was killed, he returned to Jerusalem and the prophet of God came to him and said: " Should you help the ungodly, and love them that hate the LORD? therefore the wrath of the Lord is upon you." (whoever is a friend of the world is an enemy of God.)
5. One thing that you have to admit about Jesus is that He was not politically correct.
6. Face it, "You cannot serve two masters."
7. It has to be one or the other. There used to be a popular Western song about the ricochet baby. I don't want a ricochet baby, I don't want a ricochet love, If you want to be a ricochet baby, I won't be your turtledove, I don't want a ricochet baby, no, no, no, not me, If you want to ricochet baby, I will set you free.
8. I think that the scriptures teach that God shares that sentiment.
B. Paul's preaching of the truth, brought an uproar in the world.
1. John, who was very close to Jesus wrote:
Love not the world, neither the things [that are] in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
For all that [is] in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
Don't be surprised my brethren, if the world hate you.
We know that we are of God, and the whole world lieth in wickedness.
2. After a funeral service I had a fellow come up to me and say, "That was a hell of a good message, preacher?" I felt like repenting. If the world can find comfort in your message apart from repenting, then there is something wrong with your message.
3. Proverbs tells us:
The bloodthirsty hates the upright.
He that is upright in the his ways is an abomination to the wicked.
4. Jesus instructed His disciples:
Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall exclude you [from their company], and shall smear your name, for the Son of man's sake.
And ye shall be hated of all [men] for my name's sake.
The world cannot hate you; but it hates Me, because I testify of it, that the works thereof are evil.
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before [it hated] you.
If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.
I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
5. God requires you to make a choice between God and the world.
II. PAUL EMBRACED THEM AND DEPARTED TO MACEDONIA.
A. From his letter to the Corinthians it would seem that Paul's original plan was to remain in Ephesus until Pentecost, but it is possible that this uproar caused a change of plans. Paul wrote to them:
Now I will come unto you, when I shall pass through Macedonia: for I do pass through Macedonia.
But I will tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost.
1. Often our plans are altered by circumstances.
2. James sort of warned us about setting hard and fast plans,
Go to now, you that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and stay there a year, and buy and sell, and make money:
You do not know what tomorrow might bring. For what [is] your life? It is like a vapor, that appears for a little time, and then vanishs away.
For you ought to say, If the Lord wills, and we are still alive, we will do this, or that.
B. When Paul arrived in Macedonia, he did not receive what you might term a warm loving reception. He wrote his second letter to the Corinthians from Macedonia and declared to them:
For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; there were fights without and fears within.
1. You would think that Paul might get some sort of a complex, everywhere he went trouble seemed to break out.
2. How do you suppose he kept from getting some sort of persecution complex?
3. He no doubt knew the words of Christ.
Blessed [are] they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are you, when [men] shall revile you, and persecute [you], and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great [is] your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
4. In the beginning at his conversion, the Lord had shown to Paul the sufferings he would experience for Christ sake.
For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name's sake.
C. Paul is still human, and was subject to discouragement.
Nevertheless God, that comforts those that are cast down, comforted us by the coming of Titus; And not by his coming only, but by the consolation wherewith he was comforted in you, when he told us your earnest desire, your mourning, your fervent mind toward me; so that I rejoiced the more.
1. Titus brought to Paul the good message of how the Corinthians had
received his first letter.
2. The letter was rather harsh, and he had to rebuke them for many
problems that existed in the church. He did not know how they
would take it. Will they be angry? will they reject the correction?
III. SO PAUL PASSED THROUGH THE AREA OF MACEDONIA, WHERE HE GAVE MUCH EXHORTATION TO THE BELIEVERS, AND FINALLY ARRIVED IN CORINTH.
A. Exhortation is mentioned as one of the gifts of the Spirit by Paul in Romans 12
1. It can take the form of prodding.
2. Romaine had a gift of exhortation.
3. In the New Testament, James had the gift of exhortation.
4. Paul no doubt also possessed this gift, so much of Paul's epistles were exhortations.
B. In these journeys, Paul was seeking to raise money from the Gentile believers to present it to the poor church in Jerusalem.
C. He stayed for three months with them in Corinth. This was the end of winter and early spring.
D. He then planned to sail from Corinth to Syria.
1. There were probably many Jews boarding on the ships that were headed toward Jerusalem at that time, for it was customary for them to come for the feast of Pentecost.
2. It was harder to get there across the sea during the feast of Unleavened bread, for sailing could be much more difficult.
3. Some of the Jews were conspiring against Paul, so he decided to not go directly to the Syrian port, but to return by way of Macedonia.
a. If he were on a ship with a lot of Jews, it would have been a very easy thing to throw him overboard in the middle of the night.
b. He also was probably carrying a great deal of money with him.
4. Our faith should never preclude wise precautions.
5. We never put ourselves in deliberate jeopardy. Satan tempted Jesus to do that.
IV. PAUL WAS TRAVELING WITH A LARGE COMPANY.
A. Partially for safety because of the amount of money they were taking.
B. No doubt that these various Gentiles could personally deliver to the church the monies that were collected in their areas.
1. Sopater, he was from the Brean church.
2. Aristarchus and Secundus from the church in Thessalonica.
a. Aristarchus was with Paul in Ephesus and was drug into the theater when there was the uprising.
b. He appears with Paul later when Paul was being sent to Rome after his appeal to Caesar.
c. When Paul writes to the Colossians from Rome, he refers to Aristarchus as his fellow prisoner.
d. In Philemon Paul calls him his fellowlaborer.
e. This is the only mention of Secundus.
3. Gaius of Derbe.
a. Gaius was also in Ephesus with Aristarchus and was taken into the theater.
b. There was a Gaius that was mentioned in the church of Corinth. The Gaius of Derbe may be meant to distinguish him from the other Gaius.
Gaius mine host, and of the whole church, saluteth you. Erastus the chamberlain of the city saluteth you, and Quartus a brother.
I thank God that I baptized none of you, but Crispus and Gaius;
The elder unto the wellbeloved Gaius, whom I love in the truth.
4. Timothy also from Derbe with whom we are all very familiar with, plays a great role in the life of Paul and the New Testament.
5. Tychicus, he was with Paul in Rome and the letter of Paul to the Ephesians and the Colossians, and Philemon were carried by him.
But that ye also may know my affairs, [and] how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things:
All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, [who is] a beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord:
And Tychicus have I sent to Ephesus.
When I shall send Artemas unto thee, or Tychicus, be diligent to come unto me to Nicopolis: for I have determined there to winter.
6. Trophimus, he was a Greek and from Ephesus.
(For they had seen before with him in the city Trophimus an Ephesian, whom they supposed that Paul had brought into the temple.)
Erastus abode at Corinth: but Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick. It would seem that Tychicus and Trophimus went on ahead to Troas to wait for the others to arrive there.