June 22, 2019

Ready to be Bound

Acts 21:1-36

“I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die in Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus.”

—  Acts 21:13

“Are we there yet?” Many children ask this question as they travel to a destination. It’s a question packed with anticipation, hope, and eagerness.

The apostle Paul’s journey to Jerusalem weighs heavy with concern, foreboding, and dread. At each major stop along the way, people urge Paul not to continue this journey. We even meet a prophet who illustrates how Paul will be bound and arrested in Jerusalem. When Paul finally arrives, he is greeted warmly by the leaders of the church, but they also plan out how Paul might avoid being charged falsely by his enemies.

But when some fault-finding people see Paul at the temple, they stir up a crowd and try to kill him. Before they can succeed, though, the rioters are stopped and Paul is “rescued” by the Roman authorities, who arrest him and bind him with two chains.

Amazingly, Paul is not afraid. He will do what needs to be done to serve the Savior, even in hostile Jerusalem. He is compelled by the Spirit and committed to doing God’s will.

Paul’s example is a picture of someone who is rooted in Jesus. He is ready to be bound as a prisoner because he is already bound to Jesus. No other name or loyalty brings life for Paul. No other avenue is an option.

Today, let us give thanks for Paul’s example of commitment to follow the Lord, who is forever committed to saving us.

Lord Jesus, thank you for your everlasting commitment to us. When we are tired, strengthen us to keep following you. Amen.

About the author — Julius T. Medenblik

Rev. Jul Medenblik is a former attorney who was called to pastoral ministry and became the founding pastor of a church in New Lenox, Illinois. He is currently serving as president of Calvin Theological Seminary, Grand Rapids, Michigan. Jul and his wife, Jackie, are blessed with a son, Joshua, and a daughter, Julianne.

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