Acts of the Apostles: Chapter 9 Pt. 2 “From Persecutor to Persecuted” – Teaching Review

Shalom Saints,

Again, Arthur showed that he could “walk the talk”.  Many times he has declared that the Holy Spirit would give him the words to say in his hour of need.  Well, today he left his Power Points at home!  However, with the same authority and confidence in which he always teaches, he taught today.  The Holy Spirit came through by sharpening Arthur’s memory and giving him powerful words to share with the Brethren.  When push came to shove, Arthur put his hand to the plow, relied on the Holy Spirit, and didn’t look back.  This was a striking practical example of what our Messiah promised in scripture. 

Luke 12:12

For the Holy Ghost shall teach you in the same hour what ye ought to say. (KJV)

In Arthur’s prayer, he asked the Father to speak to us with such clarity that we would receive an understanding that would enable us to apply the things that the Father would speak.  That prayer was answered!

The main teaching on Acts Chapter 9 focused on the resulting consequences of Paul’s encounter with Yeshua.  Paul experienced a major flip in his life.  He went from being the bounty hunter to being the hunted.  He went from being the notoriously feared persecutor to the suffering persecuted.  Arthur related Paul’s story of suffering for Yeshua’s namesake to elements in the suffering of the Children of Israel, the 1st Century Saints, and the 21st Century Saints – you and me.  One theme and a fact of life running through this narrative is that tribulation and persecution come to us simply because we make the decision that we are going to live our lives right.

Learn more of Paul:  Galatians Commentary Complete 4 Volume Set

One of the mini-lessons that Arthur dealt with was the use of our time.  We have 24 hours in every day.  What are we doing with them?  Time is an investment.  We should invest our time wisely so that we get a return on our investment.  If we don’t plan how we are going to spend our time, we will be wasting our time.  Arthur said the best way to get a return on our investment is to filter all of our plans through the word of Elohim.  Time is a precious commodity that once it is gone, you won’t get it back! 

 Another motivation for using our time wisely is that we will have to give an account of how we spend the time we are given.  Arthur vigorously encouraged us to invest time in our spirit man, not the carnal man.  He even gave an analogy between the wheat and the tares for us to visualize.  He said your spirit man is the wheat seed; your flesh is the tare, and the tare is trying to choke out the seed of the word.  Arthur reminded us that our greatest persecution is going to come from our own flesh!  That is why Arthur said we must live our faith BOLDLY and LOUD!

Time is a Valuable Investment!

Read about others who were persecuted:  Foxe's Book of Martyrs (Book)

Sharon’s Reflections on the Teaching

Arthur taught us a hard lesson, but a necessary lesson, to learn on this walk.  We must embrace the fact that persecution is coming so that when it comes we won’t be discouraged.  When I first came into the knowledge of the truth that the Torah was still applicable to me and that one of Yeshua’s purposes was to show me how to live this Torah life, I was driven to share the “good news” to my immediate family, friends, and relatives.  I sent flyers, DVDs, books, and ministry cards.  Those mailings went to several cities, various age and racial groups, and persons of different denominations.  I didn’t get even one “Thank you” or one person asking a question.  

In the early part of my faith walk, I would push in on those that were close to me … my Mom and Sister.  They would push back and actually I could see that I was causing a wall to go up between us.  I backed off and focused more on just being an example than trying to force feed them the truth.  I reckoned that they would see more of the Father if I just walked the life and prayed that their eyes and ears would be opened to the truth.  I believe that my Mom saw some of the light of truth before she died in 2014.  I am still praying for my Sister and the rest of my relatives and friends.

I received great comfort a couple of years ago when a Sister Saint online asked a similar question about how to reach her family that was rejecting her messages.  Arthur told her that often times our families will not hear the truth from us, but we should pray that another laborer in the Kingdom would be able to reach them in just the way that would be meaningful to them.  That is my prayer even to this day.

When I really focus on what is happening with family and friends, my heart is grieved.  However, I cannot live a life of grief.  This is where I have to leave my burdens with the Father.  If I didn’t, I would be stagnate in my walk, and be rendered useless to reach out to other people’s loved ones that I may be able to minister to in a way that they see the light and hear the “good news”! 

 

Buzz on the Teaching

This Sabbath I was able to be a part of several varied conversations at the Fellowship tables.  Here is a smidgen of what was happening.

  • One Sister Saint shared during the Q & A that she was temporarily living in a shelter and how she was able to witness to women that she would not have met under normal circumstances. She was full of joy as she fellowshipped and shared that she was going to invite one of the ladies at the shelter to Passover.  Sister Saint was also overjoyed that she was invited to participate in a “live and work” opportunity in the Northwest Territory for the spring and summer. 
  • A Sister Saint pulled me to the side to talk about her health and weight lost. She was beaming with joy over the hurdles she has crossed and looking forward to even greater progress reports. 
  • Speaking of weight lost, another Sister Saint was peeling an avocado and I walked over to converse with her. She was seeing progress and was determined to keep doing what has been working for her to reach her goal.
  • A Sister Saint was discussing with me her angst about seeing a relative make choices that is affecting not only their life but the lives of others around them. We looked at each other with a tacit understanding that it is amazing that something so clearly against the written word is sought after by the world.  We also agreed that the most we can do in some situations is to call out the wrong and accept that adults are grown and will do what they choose to do, despite our warnings.
  • A Brother Saint and his wife were first time guests although they have been online listeners for quite some time. They shared their story of coming through denominations to the true gospel.  It is always interesting to me to hear how YeHoVaH brought my Sister and Brother Saints through a winding road straight to HIM.

Until next time… Blessings to You and Yours,

Sharon

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