Paul Moved by the Athenians Need
Now while Paul waited for them at Athens, his spirit was stirred in him,
when he saw the city wholly given to idolatry. Therefore disputed he in
the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the
market daily with them that met with him.
Read Psalm 119:25- 32
Paul waited at Athens for two of his spiritual brothers, Luke and Timothy.
However, he did not remain idle while he waited; he tried to become acquainted
with some of the inhabitants. In verse sixteen we read that his
spirit was moved when he saw that the city was engaged in idolatry. Everywhere
he went he was confronted with various idols representing different
gods. Paganism was prevalent everywhere in Athens.
Maybe you have had a similar experience when you went to college or university;
you were confronted with a completely different culture and many
religions. You realized that we live in a multi-religious society. Did this
cause you to become unsure of your beliefs and perhaps even a little anxious?
Look at what we read of the apostle Paul when he was confronted with
various religious ideas: His spirit was stirred in him. The Apostle could not
tolerate the many belief systems; this did not discourage him, but it filled
him with righteous anger. He was distressed that so many people did not
know the Lord, the one true God, but served dumb, lifeless images.
In his reaction, we see Paul’s love for the Lord as well as his compassion for
the citizens of Athens. He could not just sit back and allow these people to
perish; he made his way to the synagogue of the Jews, as well as the Athenian
market place, where he sought to bring them the gospel of the Lord
Thought: When you meet someone at school or at work who practices another
religion, do you tell them about the Lord Jesus?
Psalter 326:1,3 (based on Psalm 119)
Thy promised mercies send to me, Thy great salvation, Lord;
So shall I answer those who scoff; My trust is in Thy word.
And I will walk at liberty Because Thy truth I seek;
Thy truth before the kings of earth With boldness I will speak.