Posts Tagged ‘outsider’

Verses 30-32: “And when Paul wanted to go in to the people, the disciples would not allow him. Then some of the officials of Asia, who were his friends, sent to him pleading that he would not venture into the theater. Some therefore cried one thing and some another, for the assembly was confused, and most of them did not know why they had come together.”

War Eagle! Roll Tide! Go Dawgs! Avengers Assemble! It’s Clobberin’ Time! Hulk Smash! Hey, Rube!

What do all these phrases have in common? For the most part, they are colorful rallying cries or battle phrases. The last one, “Hey, Rube!” was especially used as a warning cry by carnival workers in years long past to rally other carnies to their aid if one was threatened by an outsider. In most cases, these phrases mean something to those that know them, and know what it means when they’re yelled out.

In this section of Acts 19, the rallying cry used by the pagan Ephesians was “Great is Diana of the Ephesians!” Demetrius and his union of fellow silversmiths had stirred up a hornet’s nest of a mob, with everyone piling into the amphitheater in Ephesus. Bordering on a full-scale riot, there were others who came as well, just to see what the hubbub was about. The Ephesian disciples, fearing for Paul’s safety, wouldn’t let him in. What I find incredulous was that, with so many people packed into the theater area, “most of them did not know why they had come together.” Could you imagine our modern-day media reporters trying to conduct interviews with the locals there? (“So why are you here, sir?” “Uh…I don’t know.”) Even the Jews opposed to Paul tried to push Alexander to the platform to offer a defense (and distance themselves from Paul), but by this time, any non-Diana worshipper was treated the same. The Scriptures tell us that most of the mob were yelling “Great is Diana of the Ephesians” for almost two hours (sounds like modern day football games or recent political rallies, take your pick!)

So how was Paul rescued from this predicament? The answer shouldn’t be surprising, if you know the power of the Lord!

More to come…

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Verses 4-5: “But when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, in order that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.”

I’m about to tread dangerous waters here, because I’m about to use an analogy…regarding the faithful fans of the University of Alabama. Please bear with me. 🙂

Bill Curry was hired as the football coach at the University of Alabama and coached 3 seasons from 1987-1989 with an overall record of 26-10, including a share of the SEC championship crown in 1989.
Despite this success, a lot of Bama fans were not happy with Bill Curry: there were the 3 consecutive losses to arch-rival Auburn; the 1988 “Hurricane Bowl” in which Alabama played Texas A&M at the end of the season instead of earlier due to the threat of Hurricane Gilbert (which wound up not coming through College Station, TX), supposedly prompting then-coach Jackie Sherrill to claim that “Bear [Bryant] would have flown out here [despite the weather threat]”; and receiving a contract renewal that also supposedly stripped him of hiring/firing abilities for assistant coaches. He then went on to take the head coaching job at the University of Kentucky. The next coach to follow him at UA was Gene Stallings, a former player and coach under Bear Bryant.

A lot of talk circulated among newspapers and sports shows as to the why, but there was a common theme: Curry came to UA from Georgia Tech. He never played for Bear Bryant. He never coached for Bear Bryant. He was considered an outsider, not one of “Bear’s men”.

As Christians, we are to aspire to be more like Jesus Christ. “But that’s impossible” some might say, “Jesus is God!” Yes, He is. At the time He walked the earth, He was fully God and fully man. He was a human being like you and me, but He did not sin. He encountered all the temptations that we go through; all the joys and despairs that we encounter too. That’s part of the beauty of His perfect sacrifice and saving grace. He wasn’t an outsider God…He walked among us!

Something to think about!

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