Acts 28:1-16

Paul was told by Christ himself that all on the ship were given to him and that they would be cast on this island and all of them would survive.  Someone once wrote a book entitled, “Sailing with Paul.”  I’ve never read it, but I believe it would be good to consider reading. The people were very kind to all who were on the ship.  They built a large bonfire to warm those who had been shipwrecked.  When Paul was gathering sticks to add to the fire, he was bitten by a poisonous viper.  Knowing that Paul was a prisoner, they thought that God was allowing this as retribution.  But when nothing happened they began to think that maybe Paul was a god.  This shows how easily men’s minds can change course and be influenced in their thought life in a moment’s time.  This is still true even today. It shows us that we cannot always trust the thoughts of men, but only of God.

Next I’d like to emphasize the healings of the people.  It was God through Paul.  To this I bring attention to Paul’s thorn in the flesh (II Corinthians 12:7)
which God did not choose to take away, yet God chose to use Paul as His instrument to bring physical healing to all those on the island. 

Next we find that a ship is provided for Paul to continue on his way to Rome. It appears that Christians somehow got word of Paul’s coming and God uses them all along the way to get Paul where he needed to be.  We see God’s favor and blessings on Paul throughout his journey to Rome.  The Roman soldier Julius allows Paul to stay with believers for seven days.  By this time he was completely influenced by Paul’s Christianity.  Then when Paul sees the Christians who come out to meet him, he was consoled.  Could Paul become discouraged?  Of course!  Sometimes I think we hold him up as a super Christian and forget about his humanity.  I’m sure his emotions of discouragement and frustration were no different than yours or mine.

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