Daily Devotional Friday 8th May

by William Moody

Acts 16:11–15

The Conversion of Lydia

11 So, setting sail from Troas, we made a direct voyage to Samothrace, and the following day to Neapolis, 12 and from there to Philippi, which is a leading city of the1 district of Macedonia and a Roman colony. We remained in this city some days. 13 And on the Sabbath day we went outside the gate to the riverside, where we supposed there was a place of prayer, and we sat down and spoke to the women who had come together. 14 One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul. 15 And after she was baptized, and her household as well, she urged us, saying, “If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay.” And she prevailed upon us.

Footnotes

[1] 16:12 Or that

(ESV)

In Philippi, Paul begins his outreach among those who were religious Jews (v13). These religious people could be described as ‘low hanging fruit’, people easier to reach because they would have a knowledge of the Old Testament and who God was.

Yet, for even religious people to be saved it takes a miracle as we now see in Lydia (v14), whose heart was opened to receive the Gospel message. For anyone to respond to the Gospel and be saved, it takes a work of grace in transforming a hard heart of sin into one that will accept Christ as Saviour and Lord. The prophet Ezekiel speaks of how the Lord will take our hard heart of stone which resists Christ, and replaces it with a soft heart of flesh, that is open and sensitive to Jesus and the Gospel (Ezekiel 36 v26).

Lydia’s new found faith and love for the Lord is evident in her and her family being baptised but also in her support for Paul through hospitality (v15).

Genuine faith should be seen in caring for God’s people and supporting Gospel ministry. True faith will have hands that will serve and legs that will go for the sake of the Gospel. Pray about how you are involved at present in supporting Gospel ministry and those who minister. Is there something more the Lord wants you to do?

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (The Holy Bible, English Standard Version®),
copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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