top of page
Subscribe

Check your email for verification!

Search
  • Writer's pictureAlan Fong

Not Down for the Count

Today's Verse:

Howbeit, as the disciples stood round about him, he rose up, and came into the city: and the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch, ~Acts 14:20-21

 

For those who enjoy a pugilistic type of sports such as boxing or martial arts, you know that the goal of the contenders is to win their match. If one of the contenders detects weakness in his opponent, he automatically goes for a knockout. To attain a knockout, the opponent must be down for a count of ten. If he is unable to get up, the one standing is ruled the winner. However, sometimes a very strong contender will fool everyone and get up before the count is over and come back to fight with his opponent. This morning, we are studying where in the early days of Paul’s missionary endeavors, he was presumed down for the count, but got back up and kept going. This morning, we are looking at a man who was not down for the count.

 

We see a hostile attack.

“And there came thither certain Jews from Antioch and Iconium, who persuaded the people, and, having stoned Paul, drew him out of the city, supposing he had been dead.” Paul was viciously attacked by a mob of Jews who were antagonistic to the message of salvation. Just moments before, the people of the town were worshiping Paul as if he was a god. Now, out of blinded ignorance and infuriated prejudice, these same people picked up stones and sought to kill him. He was knocked down and left for dead. There will be times in the Christian life when you may encounter a vicious attack on your character, reputation, and person. When you are knocked on your back, what will you do?

 

We see a helpful assembly.

“Howbeit, as the disciples stood round about him.... The frenzied attack was against Paul. As he lay there in a pool of blood and with a crumpled and disheveled body, his friends assembled around him. First, I think they stood around him as a shield to prevent further rocks from being thrown at him. Second, they stood around him to support him. There was Barnabas his associate in the gospel. There was the lame man who was healed and had placed his faith in Jesus. There were Lois, Eunice, and Timothy. There were various other believers who collectively were encouraging Paul to get up. They did not assume he was down for the count. They kept saying, “C’mon Paul, you can get up!” As a body of believers, let’s be sensitive to those in our congregation who are knocked down and need encouragement to keep going.

 

We see a heroic arousal.

“He rose up.” His critics and enemies left him for dead. He probably thought for a fleeting moment, “I’m hurting, and I think I’ll stay down.” But Paul didn’t do that! He rose up! With enablement from God, he got right back up. When you are stoned and left lying in a pool of blood, the best thing to do is to get right back up. Determine in your heart that you are not staying down for the count. Get up from your discouragement! Get up from your defeat! Get up from your disappointments. Don’t stay down and be counted out: rise up!

 

We see a heated ambition.

“He rose up, and came into the city: and the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe. And when they had preached the gospel to that city, and had taught many, they returned again to Lystra, and to Iconium, and Antioch, Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.” Not only did Paul get back up, he went right back to what God called him to do! With blackened eyes, a bloodied face, and maybe broken bones, he went back into the city of his antagonists and preached the gospel. The next day, he went back to discipling and strengthening the people whom he had won to Christ. A stoning did nothing to his ambition! Don’t allow the stones that are thrown at you take away your ambition from serving the Lord.

 

Have you been knocked down? Get up, and go back to witnessing and discipling. Get back up, and serve the Lord!

 

Have a steadfast God Morning!


Bible Reading Schedule: Psalm 78-79

85 views0 comments

Comments


bottom of page