The Gospel Comes to Europe

Thursday of the Fifth Week in Easter, Year B
Acts 16

Nick reads the one-minute Firestarter. Click the image.

Paul’s disciple is the young Timothy. This is the second missionary journey of Paul. Models of leadership abound. People learn about leadership by becoming spiritual apprentices.

Remember that all of the Holy Lands at this time are part of the Roman Empire, which is divided into provinces. In addition to the names of cities, there are provinces such as Galatia, Asia (not the continent), Bithynia, Mysia, Phrygia, Macedonia, and Achaea (modern Greece). Soon into this journey, Paul receives a vision during the night to cross over into Macedonia. This would be the first time that the Gospel is preached in Europe.

One of the loveliest stories in Acts is the account of what happens when Paul and Silas are in prison. May your heart sing along with theirs as you too become open to the power of God in your life.


Thursdays in the Easter Season are dedicated to the Book of Acts.

Daily Bible Breaths

Version for Children and Families for this week


3 thoughts on “The Gospel Comes to Europe

  1. Now we know what Paul meant when he said that he was a “Prisoner in the Lord” ( Eph 4:1; 2 Tim. 1:8). What a turn of thought: I may be imprisoned “by” someone, but I’m imprisoned “in” and “for” Christ! The awareness of sharing in the victory of Jesus rather than being a victim of persecution preserves a strong faith and laser-like love.

    What a turn of responses! After a Roman flogging—consider Jesus—Paul and Silas are up at night singing praises to God. The singing further expresses the belief that God is in charge of their circumstances, just as he was earlier in Acts in Peter’s release from prison. God is good at freeing us up, no matter what imprisoned circumstance we are in…or when we’re “flogged” by whatever!

    Such joy broke the bonds of the jailer’s unbelief. What might it do for others in our own day if the joy of the Lord being in charge were to be fully believed and expressed by us!

    I was recalling others who had something positive happen to them like the jailer…Malchus’ ear…the friendship of Herod and Pilate…

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  2. Sometimes our bonds are caused by others, sometimes we create them ourselves. How incredible that singing praises to the Lord breaks imprisoning bonds of all types, even when we don’t feel like singing. Singing praises to the Lord also creates bonds, bonds that enfold us in God’s love, bonds of fellowship with others, bonds of faith, bonds of salvation. Praising the Lord doesn’t destroy bonds, perhaps really doesn’t even break them, but changes them from bonds of imprisonment, fear, and pain into bonds of joy, love, and faith, bonds of belonging in the body of Christ.

    Please God, help me sing your praises in both the height of joy and the depths of agony.

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