WHERE ARE THE MIRACLES 3/11
By Teena Myers
A great revival that spread throughout all of Asia began when Claudius commanded all Jews to leave Rome (Acts 18:2). Aquila and Priscilla traveled to Corinth where they met a fellow tentmaker name Paul. Paul came to preach the gospel but needed to support himself. He lived with Aquila and Priscilla to make and sell tents during the week and reason in the synagogue on the sabbath.
Paul persuaded both Jews and Greek under the wary eyes of the synagogue leaders. The arrival of Silas and Timothy embolden Paul to follow the promptings of the Holy Spirit. He confronted their spiritual leaders with the truth. Jesus is the prophet Moses said would arise and they must listen to him. The Jews were not inclined to listen to this Jesus who was crucified nor were they willing to believe he rose from the dead. In response Paul announced, “Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean; from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles” (Acts 18:6).
Paul and his followers went next door to Justus’ house and started a ministry to the Gentiles. I can only surmise what the Jews thought about that. Perhaps they felt safe because Paul stated he would only evangelize Gentiles. But the unthinkable happened. Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue believed on the Lord with all his house.
Paul was accustomed to being run out-of-town by jealous Jews. The conversion of the chief ruler after he announced he would only go to the Gentiles may have unnerved Paul. In a vision, God told him to speak freely. No one would hurt him.
Paul preached for a year and a half when a new deputy arrived to govern Achaia and the Jews led by their new chief ruler, Sosthenes, tried to have him arrested. The deputy was not interested in judging religious matters. The Greeks beat Sosthenes in front of the judgment seat and everyone went home. Paul continued to preach the gospel for a long time, but there is something absent in this story. Not one mention of miracles aside from many salvations. If anything remarkable happened during his ministry in Corinth, no one took notes.
Paul completed his ministry in Corinth and sailed to Ephesus with Priscilla and Aquila. They planned to stay in Ephesus, but Paul was intent on continuing the journey to Antioch. Before he left, he went to the local synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. They were interested in his message and asked him to stay. Paul declined their invitation but promised to return “if it is God’s will” (Acts 18:20-21).
“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.” Luke 11:9-10
This saying of Jesus is used as evidence you can get whatever you want from God. But Jesus had something specific in mind when he said it. The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray. He gave them a model prayer to guide them. Then he compared God with the fathers of this world. An evil father will give his child a fish or an egg if he or she is hungry. If an evil father cares enough to feed his child’s physical body, how much more will a good spiritual father quench our thirst for more of him by giving us his Holy Spirit and the gifts that come with him.
God heard the desire of the Jews for more. And if you seek more of God, you will find him, but that does not guarantee you will like what you find. The Jews thought they wanted more of God. Until God sent Paul back to Ephesus to quench their thirst.