Devotion: Who’s Next Door

“Then Paul left the synagogue and went next door to the house of Titius Justus, a worshiper of God.”  Acts 18:7

 

Let’s be honest, if you were reading through the book of Acts, you probably would skip over the passage above wouldn’t you?  Some random name, some random encounter of Paul’s.  Why would Luke tell this random tidbit?  What does that have to do with your life in Charlotte on November 8, 2012?  In our Men’s Morning Breakfast discussion today (7am the second Thursday of every month—shameless plug—with free hot breakfast), we were studying Paul’s constant movement through cities sharing the gospel.  One of the major takeaways I had was that Paul would constantly move from the synagogue out into the world—from the religious institution to “real life.”

This small random passage describes it beautifully…Paul wasn’t interested in creating an institution.  Paul was interested in meeting people, and sharing the story of Jesus with them on their turf. 

He goes from the synagogue into someone’s private home.  Not just anyone but someone with the Greekist sounding name ever: Titius Justus.  A Jew going from the holy, clean and pure synagogue to the “dirty”, “unclean,” “unchosen” home of a Greek is scandalous; not something a good religiously minded person like Paul should do.  But he does it.  And it is there in that home that Paul discovers someone who believes in Jesus.

Who lives next door to you?  Where are we looking for Jesus?  Do we feel obligated to go to the religious center expecting Him to be there and only there?  Or are we going into the homes of our neighbors, the cocktail parties, the bars and nightclubs, the condos, the underpasses, and the broken homes expecting to find Jesus there? 

 

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