July 26, 2016

Ezekiel 38-39
God tells Ezekiel to confront Gog in Magog that he will unleash against him in such a way that the nations will see him and realize that through God, God is putting his holiness on display.... you will realize that I am God....I’ll reveal my holy name among my people Israel.  Never again will I let my holy name be dragged through the mud.  Then the nations will realize that I, God, am The Holy in Israel....

I’ll put my glory on display among the nations and they’ll see the judgment I execute, see me at work handing out judgment.  From that day on, Israel will realize that I am their God. And nations will get the message that it was because of their sins that Israel went into exile....

Once I’ve brought them back from foreign parts, gathered them in from enemy territories, I’ll use them to demonstrate my holiness with all the nations watching.  Then they’ll realize for sure that I am their God, even though I sent them off into exile.  I will gather them back to their own land leaving not one soul behind.  After I’ve posted my Spirit on Israel, filled with my life, I’ll no longer look away.  I’ll look them full in the face.
Acts 20:1-20:16 - 
With things back to normal, Paul called the disciples together and encouraged them to keep up the good work in Ephesus. Then, saying his good-byes, he left for Macedonia. Traveling through the country, passing from one gathering to another, he gave constant encouragement, lifting their spirits and charging them with fresh hope.

Then he came to Greece and stayed on for three months. Just as he was about to sail for Syria, the Jews cooked up a plot against him. So he went the other way, by land back through Macedonia, and gave them the slip. His companions for the journey were Sopater; Aristarchus and Secundus, both Thessalonians; Gaius; Timothy; Tychicus and Trophimus.  They went on ahead and waited for us in Troas. Meanwhile, we stayed in Philippi for Passover Week, and then set sail. Within five days we were again in Troas and stayed a week.

In Troas, they met on Sunday to worship and celebrate the Master’s supper.  As Paul addressed this congregation, way past midnight, a young man named Eutychus fell sound asleep and toppled out of the 3rd floor window. When they picked him up, he was dead.  Paul came to him, stretched himself over him, and hugged him hard telling those no more crying, there is life in him yet.  Then Paul got up and served the Master’s supper and went on sharing stories of his faith until dawn.  

In the meantime, the rest of us had gone on ahead to the ship and sailed for Assos, where we planned to pick up Paul. Paul wanted to walk there, and so had made these arrangements earlier. Things went according to plan:... Paul had decided to bypass Ephesus so that he wouldn’t be held up in Asia province. He was in a hurry to get to Jerusalem in time for the Feast of Pentecost, if at all possible.