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The Scriptorium

To the Uttermost Parts

The Gospel is in Rome even before Paul.

The Heart of God: The Covenant People (7)

And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. Luke 24.27

Read and meditate on Acts 18-21, 27, and 28.
The book of Acts concludes with Paul arriving in Rome. The Gospel has gone from Jerusalem and Judea, through Samaria, into the Gentile regions, and to the uttermost part of earth, just as Jesus had promised. But Acts is merely a template for all generations of the covenant people of God for how they must continue the work He began, and which the apostles furthered in their generation.

For reflection
1.  Summarize Paul’s work of bringing the Gospel to the Corinthians. In what ways does his work here recapitulate all his previous efforts? How does it expand on these?

2.  In what ways was Paul’s ministry in Ephesus different from what we’ve seen previously? Look at Paul’s message to the elders of the churches in Ephesus (Acts 20.17-38). What did he expect them to do? What should they have learned from his example? Do churches need elders like this today? Explain.

3.  Why did Paul agree to take the vow in Jerusalem? Were the church leaders wrong in suggesting he do this? Why or why not?

4.  Describe Paul’s demeanor during and after the shipwreck (Acts 27, 28). How does God use His people in crises of various kinds to open doors for the Gospel? What can we learn from Paul about making the most of such opportunities?

5.  What was Paul’s message to the Jewish leaders in Rome? What do we learn from him, in Acts 28 and elsewhere, about using the Scriptures in evangelism? About accommodating our message to our hearers? About the place of the Kingdom of God in the Gospel?  

God’s glory, God’s people, God’s work of redemption: In the book of Acts these unifying threads of revelation become the unifying components of the covenant people of God. The Spirit of God provided the power of God to accomplish the mission of God in furthering the Good News of Christ and His Kingdom, even in the face of various kinds of opposition. How should the book of Acts encourage churches in our day?

Closing Prayer
Blessed is that man who makes the LORD his trust,
And does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies.
Many, O LORD my God, are Your wonderful works
Which You have done;
And Your thoughts toward us
Cannot be recounted to You in order;
If I would declare and speak of them,
They are more than can be numbered.
Sacrifice and offering You did not desire;
My ears You have opened.
Burnt offering and sin offering You did not require.
Then I said, “Behold, I come;
In the scroll of the book it is written of me.
I delight to do Your will, O my God,
And Your law is within my heart.”
I have proclaimed the good news of righteousness
In the great assembly;
Indeed, I do not restrain my lips,
O LORD, You Yourself know.
I have not hidden Your righteousness within my heart;
I have declared Your faithfulness and Your salvation;
I have not concealed Your lovingkindness and Your truth
From the great assembly.

Psalm 40.4-10

T. M. Moore

Two books can help you gain a fuller understanding of the terrain we will be covering in this series. Kingdom Documentsprovides a concise overview of the primary teaching of the Old and New Testaments, and shows, through early Church creeds, how our forebears understood the primary teachings of God’s Word. (click here to order). I Will Be Your Goddevelops more fully the idea of God’s covenant and leads us to consider the practical implications of our covenant relationship with God (click here).

Visit The Ailbe Seminary, where our course,
Introduction to Biblical Theology, offers a parallel study of our theme in this series, using brief video presentations and the workbook God’s Covenant: An Introduction. All courses at The Ailbe Seminary are available without charge.

We are happy to be able to offer each week’s Scriptorium studies in a free weekly PDF, suitable for personal or group use. You can download all the studies in this series by clicking here. Please prayerfully consider sharing with The Fellowship of Ailbe through your giving. You can contribute to The Fellowship by clicking the Contribute button at the website or by sending your gift to The Fellowship of Ailbe, 19 Tyler Drive, Essex Junction, VT 05452.

Except as indicated, Scripture taken from the New King James Version. © Copyright 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

T.M. Moore

T. M. Moore is principal of The Fellowship of Ailbe, a spiritual fellowship in the Celtic Christian tradition. He and his wife, Susie, make their home in the Champlain Valley of Vermont.
Books by T. M. Moore

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