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                         "ACTS OF THE APOSTLES"

                            Chapter Sixteen

OBJECTIVES IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER

1) To trace the route of Paul and Silas on their missionary journey

2) To consider whether the Spirit led Paul through impressions or some
   other less subjective way

3) To study carefully the conversions of Lydia and the Philippian jailer

SUMMARY

With this chapter we find Paul on his second missionary journey that
began in Ac 15:40 with Paul and Silas passing through Syria and Cilicia,
strengthening churches along the way.  In Derbe and Lystra, Paul
enlisted a young disciple named Timothy who would become a life-long
fellow-worker in the kingdom.  His mother was a believing Jew (cf. 2 Ti
1:5) but his father was Greek, so with many Jews in the region Paul had
Timothy circumcised.  As Paul's company traveled through Phrygia and
Galatia, they delivered the decrees from the apostles and elders in
Jerusalem and strengthened the churches (1-5).

With the guidance of the Holy Spirit they found themselves in Troas,
where Paul had a vision of a man from Macedonia asking for help.
Concluding that the Lord was calling them to preach the gospel there,
Paul's company left Troas accompanied by the author of Acts himself, as
indicated by the first person pronoun plural "we" (6-10).

From Troas to Samothrace and then Neapolis, the company finally arrived
in Philippi.  A major city of Macedonia and Roman colony, it marked
Paul's first ministry on the European continent.  On the Sabbath Paul
and his companions went down to the river where women were praying.  As
Paul spoke, a religious business woman of Thyatira named Lydia listened.
The Lord opened her heart to heed Paul, which resulted in her and her
household being baptized.  She then persuaded Paul and his companions to
stay at her house (11-15).

Paul and his company were soon followed by a slave girl possessed by a
spirit of divination that made money for her owners through fortune
telling.  For days she cried out, "These men are the servants of the
Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation."  While true, it
annoyed Paul (probably because it was not of her own free will) and he
cast the spirit out in the name of Jesus.  This greatly angered the
girl's masters, who had Paul and Silas beaten and imprisoned.  At
midnight while Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns, a great
earthquake shook the prison and broke free their chains.  Assuming all
had fled, the jailer was about to kill himself when Paul stopped him.
When the jailor asked what he must do to be saved, Paul and Silas told
him to believe on the Lord Jesus, and then proceeded to teach him and
his family the word of the Lord.  That same night, the entire family was
baptized.  In the morning, the magistrates sent word to release Paul and
Silas, but Paul demanded a personal release as they were Roman citizens
who were beaten and imprisoned without trial.  Scared, the magistrates
came and pleaded with Paul and Silas to leave the city, which they did
after a short visit to Lydia's house to encourage the brethren.  Note
that the author's return to the use of "they" indicates that Luke stayed
behind in Philippi (16-40).

OUTLINE

I. TIMOTHY JOINS PAUL AND SILAS (1-5)

   A. TIMOTHY'S BACKGROUND (1-3)
      1. Paul and Silas travel to Derbe and Lystra, where they meet
         Timothy
      2. A disciple, whose mother was a Jewish Christian and father was
         Greek
      3. Well spoken of by the brethren at Lystra and Iconium

   B. TIMOTHY'S CIRCUMCISION (3)
      1. Paul wants Timothy to join him
      2. Paul has Timothy circumcised, on account of the Jews in the
         region

   C. TIMOTHY'S FIRST MISSION (4-5)
      1. Traveling with Paul and Silas, they deliver the decrees from
         Jerusalem
      2. The churches are strengthened, increasing in number daily

II. THE MACEDONIA CALL (6-10)

   A. DIRECTED BY THE SPIRIT (6-8)
      1. Passing through Phrygia and Galatia, the Spirit forbids them
         from preaching in Asia
      2. Nearing Mysia, they try to go to Bithynia, but the Spirit does
         not permit them
      3. Bypassing Mysia, they arrive in Troas

   B. CALLED BY A VISION (9-10)
      1. Paul has a vision of a Macedonian man asking for help
      2. Paul and his companions conclude God wants them to go to
         Macedonia
      3. The use of "we" indicates Luke, the author, has now joined them

III. CONVERSIONS AT PHILIPPI (11-40)

   A. THE CONVERSION OF LYDIA (11-15)
      1. From Troas, by way of Samothrace and Neapolis, Paul's company
         arrive at Philippi of Macedonia, a Roman colony
      2. On the Sabbath, they meet with women gathered by the river to
         pray and Paul speaks
      3. Lydia, who worshiped God, listens and the Lord opens her heart
         to heed Paul
      4. She and her household are baptized, and persuades Paul's
         company to stay at her house

   B. THE CONVERSION OF THE JAILER (16-40)
      1. On the way to prayer, Paul's and his companions are followed by
         a slave girl
         a. Who was possessed with a spirit of divination
         b. Who had brought her masters much profit through fortune
            telling
      2. She proclaims Paul's company to be servants of God, proclaiming
         the way of salvation
         a. This she does for many days, which annoys Paul
         b. Paul therefore casts out the spirit in the name of Jesus
      3. Her masters seize Paul and Silas, and drag them before the
         magistrates
         a. Where they are accused as troublemakers, teaching unlawful
            customs
         b. Where they are beaten with rods, then imprisoned with feet
            in stocks
      4. At midnight, Paul and Silas are praying and singing hymns, the
         prisoners listening
      5. There is a great earthquake, opening the doors and loosening
         the prisoners' chains
      6. The jailer comes in, assumes all have escaped, prepares to kill
         himself
      7. Paul cries out with a loud voice to stop him, assuring him that
         all were still there
      8. The jailer asks for a light, falls before Paul and Silas, and
         asks what he must do to be saved
         a. They first tell him to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ
         b. They then speak the word of the Lord to him and his
            household
         c. That same hour he washes their stripes, then he and his
            household are baptized
         d. He then takes Paul and Silas to his house, feeds them, and
            rejoices that he and his household has believed in God
      9. The next day the magistrates send officers to release Paul and
         Silas
         a. When the jailer tells Paul he is free to go, Paul demands
            that the magistrates come personally, as they have beaten
            Roman citizens without a trial
         b. So the magistrates come, release Paul and Silas, and plead
            for them to leave the city
     10. Returning to Lydia's house, Paul and Silas encourage the
         brethren, then leave Philippi

REVIEW QUESTIONS FOR THE CHAPTER

1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - Timothy joins Paul and Silas (1-5)
   - The Macedonian call (6-10)
   - Conversions at Philippi (11-40)

2) Where did Paul go after passing through Syria and Cilicia (1; cf.
   15:41)
   - Lystra and Derbe

3) Who did Paul want to travel with him?  What is said about him? (1-2)
   - A disciple named Timothy
   - Son of a Jewish woman who believed, and whose father was Greek
   - Well spoken of by the brethren in Lystra and Iconium

4) Why did Paul have him circumcised? (3)
   - Because of the Jews in that region that knew his father was Greek
   - I.e., not to be saved, but to conciliate his relationship with
     other Jews (cf. w/Titus, Ga 2:3-5)

5) What did Paul's company deliver as they traveled?  What was the
   reaction? (4-5)
   - The decrees to keep as determined by the apostles and elders at
     Jerusalem
   - The churches were strengthened in number and grew daily

6) How did the Spirit guide Paul's company in their travels? Where did
   they wind up? (6-8)
   - By forbidding them to preach in Asia; not permitting them to go
     into Bithynia
   - In Troas

7) What vision did Paul have?  What did he and his companions conclude?
   (9-10)
   - A man in Macedonian apparel pleading with him, "Come over to
     Macedonia and help us"
   - The Lord had called them to preach the gospel to those in Macedonia

8) From Troas, where did they go?  Who evidently joined them at Troas?
   (11-12)
   - Samothrace, Neapolis, and then to Philippi, a major city of
     Macedonia and Roman colony
   - Luke, the author of Acts, as indicated by the pronoun "we"

10) Where did Paul's company go on the Sabbath?  What did they do? (13)
   - The riverside where prayer was customarily made; they spoke to the
     women gathered there

11) Who heard them?  What kind of woman was she?  What happened as she
    listened? (14)
   - Lydia, a seller of purple from Thyatira
   - A worshiper of God
   - The Lord opened her heart to heed the things spoken by Paul

12) What happened next?  Afterwards, what did she do? (15)
   - She and her household were baptized
   - She persuaded Paul and his company to stay at her house

13) Who began to follow Paul and his company?  What did she do? (16-17)
   - A slave girl possessed with a spirit of divination, who earned
     money by fortune telling
   - Followed them for many days, saying "These men are the servants of
     the Most High God, who proclaim to us the way of salvation"

14) Why do you think Paul was greatly annoyed? What did he then do? (18)
   - Her proclamation was not freely given, by compelled by the spirit
     that possessed her
   - He cast out the spirit in the name of Jesus Christ

15) What sequence of events followed this miracle? (19-24)
   - Her masters dragged Paul and Silas to the marketplace and before
     the authorities
   - They roused the multitude against Paul and Silas, the magistrates
     had them beaten with rods
   - Paul and Silas were then secured in the inner prison with their
     feet in stocks

16) What did Paul and Silas do while imprisoned? (25)
   - Prayed and sang hymns while other prisoners listened

17) What led to the jailer asking what he must do to be saved? (26-30)
   - There was a great earthquake, all the doors were opened and chains
     loosened
   - The jailer assumes all escaped and was about to kill himself
   - Paul stops him, telling him that all the prisoners were present

18) What does Paul say and do in answer to the jailor's question?
    (31-32)
   - Tells him to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ to be saved
   - Speaks the word of the Lord to him and his household

19) What happened that same hour of the night? (33)
   - The jailer took Paul and Silas and washed their stripes
   - The jailer and all his family were baptized immediately

20) What else did the jailer do for Paul and Silas?  How would you
    describe his attitude? (34)
   - Brought them into his home and fed them
   - Happy that he and his household believed in God

21) When word was sent for Paul and Silas to be released, how did Paul
    respond? (35-37)
   - He demanded the magistrates appear in person, because they had
     beaten Romans without being properly condemned

22) How did the magistrates respond? (38-39)
   - With fear, then personally pleading with Paul and Silas to leave
     the city

23) Leaving the prison, what did Paul and Silas do before departing
    the city? (40)
   - Encouraged the brethren at the house of Lydia

24) Who evidently stayed behind at Philippi? (40)
   - Luke, the author of Acts, as indicated by the pronoun "they"
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