Acts 28, community, Paul’s…

9 Jul

There are multiple types of communities: work and family; friends and foes; casual and intimate. Paul’s story, as told by Luke in Acts, is about these communities and more.

He has a Sanhedrin work community as he consents in Stephen’s murder and a new Christian family with his handpicked ‘son’ Timothy. As Saul, Christians were his sworn enemies. As Paul, Barnabas is his lifelong brother.

Malta islanders begin as ‘unusually’ kind, yet they are new and causal; and then, thorough Jesus’ healing powers and Paul’s hands, they grow intimate. Here is the story of their growth, their life for three moths, together. A community.

7 ‘There was an estate nearby that belonged to Publius, the chief official of the island. He welcomed us to his home and showed us generous hospitality for three days. 8 His father was sick in bed, suffering from fever and dysentery. Paul went in to see him and, after prayer, placed his hands on him and healed him. 9 When this had happened, the rest of the sick on the island came and were cured. 10 They honored us in many ways; and when we were ready to sail, they furnished us with the supplies we needed.

Paul’s Arrival at Rome

11 After three months we put out to sea in a ship that had wintered in the island—it was an Alexandrian ship with the figurehead of the twin gods Castor and Pollux.’

Soon, very soon, in a passing season, Paul and his friends will be in spring time Rome. Malta’s supplies will last them for winter. Each winter day Paul’s ship community eat the fruit of his Malta’s fellowship. Each day they will fellowship with Malta.

And each day I can imagine Paul sharing his heart and words; his story and testimony; his hands, free or chained.

Each day I see and hear Paul. I hear and see him through Luke’s narration and Paul’s own words. Through Paul’s winter writings, his epistles. I see, hear.

As we see and hear Pail, we are his; his community. And Malta’s. And Luke and Julius’. And Jesus’.

See and hear.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: