My friend Larry asked: Why did Paul get up? Why didn’t he just stay down? Why did he go back to Lystra after having been stoned by an angry mob only days earlier? It is obvious that a miracle occurred enabling Paul to drag his wounded body to its feet and march back to town, but why did he do it?
Because of what he knew.
Some think Paul actually died at Lystra and went to heaven, where he saw and heard things that the Lord would not permit him to share and which were too wonderful to express.
Do you remember 2 Corinthians 12:2 where Paul writes about a man who was caught up into the third heaven? Perhaps he’s talking about himself and referring to his visit with the Lord.
But whether or not Paul died at Lystra, he understood an aspect of the gospel that had not yet been conveyed, and he was intent on sharing his heart. Throughout Paul’s writings he repeatedly hammers out two inexorable principles.
The first is that Christ Jesus came to live and express Himself through us. He is not beside us to encourage us, behind us to push us, in front of us to lead us, under us to carry us, or above us to guide us. He is in us to live His life through us.
Second, and a point Paul stresses ten times more vociferously than the first: We are in Christ, justified to be in the family of God, blessed with a new heritage and endowed with a new identity declaring us to be His accepted, loved children.
From start to finish, in every way imaginable, with logic, passion, anger, indignation, and compassion, Paul writes of these two driving spiritual principles.
Next blog, Launching Paul