Sometimes unpleasant circumstances seem to conspire against us. When in reality they bring us closer to our destiny. This is exactly what happened to Paul when he went to the temple.

Here Paul coincidentally meets some Jews from the province of Asia. No doubt from a city Paul had visited on one of his missionary journeys. They recognize him and are very upset to see him in the temple!

Perhaps they are some of the men who were in the mob who stoned him in Lystra or other irate men who unsuccessfully opposed him in Ephesus. Angry with Paul because of his success in teaching about Jesus in their synagogues!

They begin to shout to everyone - Men of Israel, help us! This is the man who teaches all men everywhere against our people and our law and this place.

Paul is a victim of circumstances. They bring a false accusation that he had defiled the temple by bringing Greeks there - They had previously seen Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with Paul and assumed that Paul had brought him into the temple area.

The riot spreads through the city like wildfire. They drag Paul from the temple and begin to beat him to death. Only the intervention of a Roman troop saves his life!

Coincidence? Students of Jesus do not believe it. What seems to be accidental may be a part of God’s plan. Even unpleasant circumstances may be lead us to fulfill our destiny. God is sovereign!

When Jesus called Paul to be an apostle to the Gentiles, He told him how he would suffer for his Name and be a witness before Kings.

Now, because of this incident Paul will be tried in several Roman Courts. As an attorney, Paul will make his own defense. And his message about Jesus will be heard by the Kings who sit in judgment over him.

Eventually Paul will be executed for his faith. But not before he fulfills the work Jesus gave him. And it’s no coincidence that these men who tried to kill Paul actually propel him along on the path of God’s Will.

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