We might wonder and ask in Acts 24:24-26…in Paul’s personal interview with Felix the Roman governor and his Jewish wife Drusilla…why Paul the prisoner is afforded this level of respect and attention?
There is something special in the life of Paul the apostle that captures the admiration of people across the social spectrum (Acts 14:1, 19:31).
Simply stated…the reason why is that Paul was sold-out for God. The boldness, determination, and commitment of Paul’s life and words were so courageously uninhibited by the constraints of conventional thinking that this captured the interest of people following the normal pursuits of self-interest and self-sufficiency according to the standard rules of this world (1 Pet. 2:9).
Paul’s life and words…both at the cutting edge of persuasive reasoning, committed purpose, and self-abandoned adventure…captured people’s attention because deep within us we have a similar longing for truth, direction, and purpose in our own lives.
In my opinion, this has something to say to us regarding the Christian church in the upcoming end-times.
Joel 2:28 tells us that in the last days God will pour out His spirit upon the earth.
In the Bible, every time the Holy Spirit comes upon people a unique occurrence of uninhibited boldness and the powerful clarity of knife-edge truth is spoken in self-abandoned courage…sometimes within the main gate into the city of Jerusalem (Jer. 20:9)…sometimes within the court of the king (2 Sam. 12:7-12)…sometimes in protest before a despot (Dan. 3:16-18)…sometimes before a governing council (Acts 4:8, 20)…and sometimes before thousands of people (Acts 2:41).
At the end of time…at the end of human redemptive history…worldly conventional normalcy has no relevance. When there are only a few short years until the close of life as we know it here on earth…the relevance of our European vacation, which color to paint the kitchen, and what law school our brilliant granddaughter should go to has little importance in the big scheme of things.
When it really comes down to the end…this element of self-abandoned courageous witnessing to our faith in Jesus Christ as Savior and King takes on the expediency of the Israelites in the desert looking at the brazen serpent lifted up on a pole…in order to live (Num. 21:9).
Acts 4:33 reads: “And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.”
This same Holy Spirit power of God may be universally experienced by every Spirit-born Christian at the close of time…generating the hatred described in Matthew 24:9…but also the final evangelism of the world of Matthew 24:14…with the same great grace, power, and admiration from people that Paul enjoyed and used for the furtherance of the gospel…as a result of his uninhibited commitment to present the gospel message of Christ to the world.