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Acts 17.1-9; Church at Thessalonica

Jill and Sarah were enjoying a pleasant morning together over muffins and coffee. Their conversation wandered through several topics. Sarah was quiet for a moment and then asked, “Jill, why are you a Christian? Jill did a double take while Sarah continued. “I know that you go to church regularly and that you are involved in several church activities. You’ve shared a few things that you believe because you are a Christian. So, I want to know, why did you choose to be a person of faith?” Jill thought for a moment in order to collect her thoughts. In one of the Bible studies that she had attended the class participants had been encouraged to write out an “elevator witness”—a two minute presentation of why they were a Christian. The participants would then be prepared to share if a co-worker ever asked while they were riding the elevator to the office.

Paul was an expert at sharing his faith. He is known more for that than he is for performing gracious and kind actions. Paul would first share his faith with his fellow Jews. He would then expand the circle of his sharing to devout gentiles. Many people responded to Paul’s sharing the good news of Jesus with them. These people’s lives were changed and the seeds were planted for the world to be transformed.

What would we say if someone asked us why we chose to be disciples of Jesus?

Acts 17:1-9

After Paul and Silas had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. And Paul went in, as was his custom, and on three sabbath days argued with them from the scriptures, explaining and proving that it was necessary for the Messiah to suffer and to rise from the dead, and saying, “This is the Messiah, Jesus whom I am proclaiming to you.” Some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a great many of the devout Greeks and not a few of the leading women. But the Jews became jealous, and with the help of some ruffians in the marketplaces they formed a mob and set the city in an uproar. While they were searching for Paul and Silas to bring them out to the assembly, they attacked Jason’s house. When they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some believers before the city authorities, shouting, “These people who have been turning the world upside down have come here also, and Jason has entertained them as guests. They are all acting contrary to the decrees of the emperor, saying that there is another king named Jesus.” The people and the city officials were disturbed when they heard this, and after they had taken bail from Jason and the others, they let them go.