A Man to Follow Part 13: Paul Journeys Through Macedonia
After the uproar at Ephesus, Paul passed through Macedonia and on to Greece where he stayed for three months. He would have gone to Syria but because the Jews were plotting to kill him he decided to go through Macedonia again on his way to Troas.
His faithful companions were waiting for him there, Sopater of Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Guis from Debre, Timothy, Tychicus and Trophimus from Asia.
Can you imagine the tremendous fellowship and conversations that would take place between those seven of God’s choicest servants? How important even today to have this repeated over and over again. This would strengthen and encourage them in the work of God as well as provide times of refreshing from the arduous labors they were all involved in. Paul joined them at Troas and remained there for seven days.
The first day of the week
Here we see the pattern confirmed that on the first day of the week the disciples came together to break bread. (Acts 20:7) It is worthy of note this day is associated with three important facts.
Firstly, it was the day of Resurrection (8th Day) when our Lord Jesus came out of the tomb and rose from the dead (Luke 24:1-8). This marked the day as distinctly different from the Jewish sabbath. At that time the first day of the week was an ordinary day and was not restricted as the Jewish sabbath was.
Secondly, they probably gathered at night because it was a normal working day. The Lord’s day Observance Society and others have tried over the years to impose sabbath laws upon the first day (Sunday) but there is no scriptural basis for it.
I know many believers have a sentimental attachment to make it so but the only requirement for this day is to break bread and remember the Lord. All other activities and ministries while enjoyed on the Lord’s day are equally important on any day of the week. The time in the day is irrelevant and each assembly being autonomous has to make it as best suits the needs of the company.
Thirdly, in 1 Corinthians 16:1-2, on the first day of the week, each one had to put in something to the collection and this I believe is also part of the worship of the heart. One of the features of assembly fellowship is this was the only time scripturally a collection was taken. Paul had already established the practice in the churches of Galatia.
Dear believer are you fulfilling your responsibility to Lord and His assembly? It not only helps with local activities but also the work of the Lord and His servants as well as missionary endeavors all over the world.
Get into the desire to bring as the Lord enables for He “loves a cheerful giver.” (2 Corinthians 9:7) (A good exercise to read chapters 8&9.)
The man who fell out of the window
In the upper room where they gathered it says there were many lamps so the place would have been well lit. Because he was leaving the next day, Paul spoke to them and continued his message until midnight. We do not know when he actually started his teaching but it sure was long.
We would think if Paul is speaking there would be rapt attention, but even today the best of speakers, if they go long winded, are sure to lose some to sleep.
Just think how Eutychus would feel when he was awakened up from his deep sleep after falling out of the window which was three stories high. The deep concern to all as he lay on the ground was that he was dead, but as Paul embraced him, he said that his life is in him and he recovered.
Quite a story for Eutychus to tell his friends and his name is recorded in Scripture for all to know. It is comforting this is not an isolated incident. For many different reasons dear believers have fallen asleep while listening to preachers.
After they broke bread they continued talking until the dawning of the day. It would seem for them it was hard to leave the believers there but Paul sailed on and came to Miletus. Passing Ephesus by for he wanted to get to Jerusalem before Pentecost.