God Can Be Believed

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God Can Be Believed

God Can Be Believed

Acts 27:26  Howbeit we must be cast upon a certain island.
27  But when the fourteenth night was come, as we were driven up and down in Adria, about midnight the shipmen deemed that they drew near to some country;
28  And sounded, and found it twenty fathoms: and when they had gone a little further, they sounded again, and found it fifteen fathoms.
29  Then fearing lest we should have fallen upon rocks, they cast four anchors out of the stern, and wished for the day.
30  And as the shipmen were about to flee out of the ship, when they had let down the boat into the sea, under colour as though they would have cast anchors out of the foreship,
31  Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, Except these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved.
32  Then the soldiers cut off the ropes of the boat, and let her fall off.
33  And while the day was coming on, Paul besought them all to take meat, saying, This day is the fourteenth day that ye have tarried and continued fasting, having taken nothing.
34  Wherefore I pray you to take some meat: for this is for your health: for there shall not an hair fall from the head of any of you.
35  And when he had thus spoken, he took bread, and gave thanks to God in presence of them all: and when he had broken it, he began to eat.
36  Then were they all of good cheer, and they also took some meat.
37  And we were in all in the ship two hundred threescore and sixteen souls.
38  And when they had eaten enough, they lightened the ship, and cast out the wheat into the sea.

God knows all things. He gave Paul a promise of what he would do yet. He also promised that all those who were travelling with him would be spared. In verse 26 God told him they would end up shipwrecked on a certain island. God shows us many times of the positive impact one godly person can have on others. The Jews hated Paul, but they actually hated God. However, godly people are a blessing to a wicked society. God tells us in II Thessalonians 2 that He is withholding evil at this time. When the true saints are removed from this world, evil will abound in a much greater way.
In verse 27 we learn they had spent 14 days by now and the shipmen determined that they were drawing nigh to some country. In verse 28 we read they did depth testing to determine that they were getting closer to land. It was at night and they did not have lights to see what was there. Not knowing what was ahead, they cast out the anchors and hoped for day time to come. These men were lost men and they did not have the confidence that Paul had. Paul had his faith in the true God and he knew that God had told him what was ahead for him in the near future.
In verse 30 we see that some of the seamen wanted to escape the ship. They were not very smart. They had been battling winds and high waters for 14 days now. Yet these men wanted to escape with a lifeboat. They were also very selfish. They wanted to get away and did not care about the rest of the people on the ship.
In verse 31 we see that a faithful servant of God cares about others. Paul wanted to see the entire list of passengers safe. He knew what God had told him and he advised the centurion and the soldiers that these men needed to stay with the ship to be safe. Interestingly the centurion and soldiers listened to Paul this time. They cut the ropes of the boat and let her fall off. Now the lifeboat was good for nobody.
In verse 33 Paul once again encouraged the people to eat something. Again Paul gave evidence of his faith in God. Paul was able to encourage these people to take some food. Paul was able to encourage them that they would be safe in spite of what was going on.
Paul not only spoke of safety, but he took bread and gave thanks to God for it and broke it and ate. Paul was not ashamed to demonstrate his faith in God. This situation they were facing was not God’s fault. God had given Paul wise counsel and he passed that wisdom on to those in charge. The problem was that those in charge doubted the reality of God and thus dismissed Paul’s counsel. The current situation they were facing was due to their own pride and stubbornness.
In verse 35 we see that Paul had been able to demonstrate to the people that he was trustworthy. No doubt some of them envied his calmness and confidence. They now listened to him and they all ate something and then threw the rest overboard.
In verse 37 we are given the number of the people on the ship. There were 276 people on board the ship. Paul had a great opportunity to minister to these people through this storm. He had been able to help them to see the importance of true faith.
As we read in verse 38, after they had eaten enough they threw the rest of the wheat into the sea to lighten the ship. They had hoped to be able to move further upstream toward whatever land was there, come daylight.
This had been quite the adventure. Paul had told them that they would not be able to save the ship. The ship’s master and owner and the centurion had put the people through quite the testing. God had kept them from causing a mutiny against those in charge. God was watching over this whole matter.
Today, we have this same God Who is still watching over the affairs of man. We know that our country is headed for shipwreck. We certainly cannot look to politics to save us. We have no one, whether in opposition or in government who has any hope of leading us out of the mess we are in. The PC’s are currently looking for a new leader. Some think that Mr. Pollievre would make a good leader. He seems to have some good economic understanding, but he is morally bankrupt. Mr. Harper had some good economic sense as well, but he too was morally bankrupt. No nation can do well when it chooses to reject the true God.
The apostle Paul showed the people of his day that God is the hope of man. That is the same hope we need today. We cannot expect the government to fix the problems they have created. We also should not expect that things are going to get better for our country. We are headed in a downward spiral from which we will not recover. It is not just our country that is in a mess, but the entire world is in a mess. The focus of true Christians needs to be on the Gospel. Souls need to be saved and be prepared for the Lord’s soon return.
Those who are saved need to be looking for a better place.

II Corinthians 4:18  While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.

Philippians 3:20  For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ:

Those who are saved understand that there is no other country on earth to flee to. The world is in a mess. There is no safe haven on this earth. We need to serve the Lord faithfully where He wants us to be and we need to look for that redemption that is drawing nigh.
Today is the Lord’s Day. It is the day for people to go to a good church where they can learn God’s will. Listening to empty promises from politicians is exactly that. You don’t live well on chips and pop. A country cannot survive on empty promises. We need to know the true God and serve Him. That is the hope of man.

Psalm 122:1  I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the LORD.

Pastor Bartel

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