The earliest Christians followed a Jewish tradition of pausing to pray, preferably together, first thing in the morning, about mid morning, at noon, about mid afternoon, and in the evening. “Just a Note” posts are brief observations made from Scripture readings not related to a lectionary. If I have one to post, it normally appears about 9:00 in the morning, at “the hour of prayer.”
I expect I’m not the only person ever to wish I could do a miracle. Especially when frustrated in some way! Wouldn’t it be nice to speak like Paul and Barnabas did to Elymas? They really did have every expectation that the Lord would do a miracle through their words.
In Acts 13:9-12 we do well to observe several features of the encounter. First, Elymas has been overtly attempting to stop the Gospel from being communicated to Sergius Paulus. He has tried to stop Paul from speaking the truth. It was critical to God’s mercy that Sergius should hear. Second, the miracle done did not bring harm. In fact, it brought good. Elymas also heard the good news of life in Christ. He was not physically harmed in any way. Finally, we realize that most of the time, the New Testament shows no miracles like this. It is the exception rather than the norm.
Would we like God to intervene in our personal disputes? He can do it through the great power of the Holy Spirit and through His Word, which is always available to all his people. There may be times when we receive special insight. There may even be times when something clearly supernatural happens. But most of the time, God places us in situations and we speak according to the knowledge of Scripture that we have. It works out just fine. The Lord is Lord of all.
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