Acts 28 Lesson

Peace

PEACE

A study conducted in 2019 showed that over a period of just six years, the number of self-help books sold in the United States had more than tripled! (Source: Google Search)

  • 2013: 1.4 million self-help books sold in the United States.

  • 2019: 4.3 million self-help books sold in the United States.

Why are people so worried

Part of the answer is because of the decline of organized religion.

DECLINING CHURCH MEMBERSHIPS

According to news.gallup.com, church membership has declined by 20% in the last two decades. 

Fewer people going to church means fewer people hearing God’s word, and that leads to an increase in anxiety.

People with strong faith worry less than those without it because they have the hopeof eternalsalvation.

FOLLOWING JESUS

The apostle Paul said:

  • “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and pleading with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.    And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:6-7.

It is not until we eliminate worry from our minds that we can truly be at peace with God, and ourselves.  

FINDING PEACE REQUIRES FAITH

Paul wrote in his letter to the Romans:

  • “So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” – Romans 10:17.

As we spend more time in God’s word, our faith will increase.    

The opposite is also true. 

When there are fewer people in God’s word, there will be an increase in anxiety.

THE APOSTLE PAUL

Paul’s faith allowed him to be at peace in difficult circumstances.

In Acts Chapter 28, Paul, Luke, and others are sailing to Malta when a horrific storm appears. 

The storm was so severe, that they were forced to abandon their ship and throw their food overboard to avoid perishing at sea. 

Those on board had plenty of reasons to worry, especially Paul!

Paul was on his way to Rome to stand trial for his life.

Paul’s amazing faith allowed him to be at peace during times of great affliction.

Paul understood God's plan for him, and he was determined to follow it.

When Paul and the others arrived in Malta, the natives of the island greeted them and provided them with food and fire. 

This was no coincidence.

God understood what they needed, and He provided it. 

The same can be said for us if we follow the unique plan that God has made for us.

As we navigate the storms in our own lives, God moves people in and out of our lives to make sure that we have all that we need. 

God understands our needs even before we ask Him. (Mathew 6:8)

And if we put our trust in Him, and His unique plan for us, we will not be disappointed!

CONCLUSION

There is an increased level of anxiety in the world today, in part, because fewer people are going to church.

God does not want His children to be worried.

Jesus talked about this during His Sermon on the Mount when He said:

  • “For this reason I say to you, do not be worried about your life, as to what you will eat or what you will drink; nor for your body, as to what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, that they do not sow, nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not worth much more than they? And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life? And why are you worried about clothing? Observe how the lilies of the field grow; they do not toil, nor do they spin, yet I say to you that not even Solomon in all his glory clothed himself like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which is alive today and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, will He not much more clothe you? You of little faith! Do not worry then, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear for clothing?’ For the Gentiles eagerly seek all these things; for your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.   “So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” – Mathew 6:25-34.

Jesus knew that having strong faith was the key to eliminating worry, and He shared that with His audience. 

As we navigate through life and face adversity, we need to remember the importance of faith in our lives.

As Children of God, we need to make a commitment to studying God’s word and applying it to our lives.

And when we do, we will find the peace that surpasses all understanding. (Philippians 4:6-7)

We will end today’s lesson with the following scripture taken from the Gospel of John. It reminds us of how God and Jesus want us to be at peace in our lives:

  • “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33.

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Virtual Bible Study

1) What did today’s Bible study make you think and feel?
2) How can you apply what you have just learned to something specific that is happening in your life?

***PLEASE POST YOUR QUESTIONS OR COMMENTS HERE***

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Rev.Abraham.philips
Virtual Bible Study

Very nice Bible study
Informative
Systematic, thanks God bless.

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