Daily Reading: Acts 26:1-3
“Then Agrippa said to Paul, “You have permission to speak for yourself.” So Paul motioned with his hand and began his defense: 2 “King Agrippa, I consider myself fortunate to stand before you today as I make my defense against all the accusations of the Jews, 3 and especially so because you are well acquainted with all the Jewish customs and controversies. Therefore, I beg you to listen to me patiently.”
Freedom isn’t determined by our situation but by our position and our spiritual birthright.
The blessing of all of Paul’s legal trouble- is that he got to give his testimony to the whole Jewish Sanhedrin, just like Jesus said he would—”they will arrest you and this will be a time for testimony” (Luke 21:12). The persecution sets up the time for the testimony. God has gospel purposes in all the trials of our lives. Put on those gospel shoes of peace (Ephesians 6:15) with the readiness to move with the gospel wherever God leads you.
“I consider myself fortunate” (Hēgeomai)- think (Makarios)- happy blessed. The way we recognize our freedom is to think about how truly blessed we are in Christ (Acts 26:2).
We change our mind for the better [Acts 26:20] (repent/ metanoia) as we walk away from sin because we are captivated by Someone, infinitely better. The revelation that Jesus is lovely and God is good and He thinks we’re special, causes the things of this world to grow strangely dim.
The world may look at your situation and feel sorry for you (Acts 26:32), but sometimes the persecution you face is the exact thing that leads you to present the Gospel and share your freedom story.