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Acts 19_8-20 The Powerful Words

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The Powerful Words

Acts 19:8-20

Secular:

  • We know how powerful words can be….
  • Honey the doctor’s office phoned… and we’re having a baby!
  • Do you take this man to be your lawfully wedded husband… to have and to hold…
  • The results have come back… I am sorry it is cancer…
  • Mom look… I got an “A”
  • Licence and registration please…
  • Congratulations it’s boy…
  • Unfortunately because of your teacher’s illness today’s test has been cancelled
  • And now I’d like to introduce to you the graduating class of 2003
  • Yes… I will marry you…
  • Powerful Words…

Biblical:

NAU Acts 19:8 And he entered the synagogue and continued speaking out boldly for three months, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God. 9 But when some were becoming hardened and disobedient, speaking evil of the Way before the people, he withdrew from them and took away the disciples, reasoning daily in the school of Tyrannus. 10 This took place for two years, so that all who lived in Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks. 11 God was performing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, 12 so that handkerchiefs or aprons were even carried from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out. 13 But also some of the Jewish exorcists, who went from place to place, attempted to name over those who had the evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, "I adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preaches." 14 Seven sons of one Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said to them, "I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?" 16 And the man, in whom was the evil spirit, leaped on them and subdued all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known to all, both Jews and Greeks, who lived in Ephesus; and fear fell upon them all and the name of the Lord Jesus was being magnified. 18 Many also of those who had believed kept coming, confessing and disclosing their practices. 19 And many of those who practiced magic brought their books together and began burning them in the sight of everyone; and they counted up the price of them and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver. 20 So the word of the Lord was growing mightily and prevailing.

Personal:

  • Do you remember when the Spirit of God transformed you?... through conviction, the word,…
  • Do you remember the first time you understood… “It is finished”
  • The first time the Gospel message made sense… and was acutely personal
  •  … how about the your first Easter celebration as a believer?

Bridge:

  • We spend far too much of our time… outside God’s Power…
    • Not that we escape him…
    • But that we are not living according to his disclosed will…
  • There is power is words of God… We need to be faithful servants sharing those Powerful Words… it is our mandate!

Declaration of PW

Confirmation of PW

Competition to PW

Conviction of PW

Domination of PW

  • Let’s examine these areas in Paul’s teaching…

Body:

Declaration

NAU Acts 19:8 And he entered the synagogue and continued speaking out boldly for three months, reasoning and persuading them about the kingdom of God. 9 But when some were becoming hardened and disobedient, speaking evil of the Way before the people, he withdrew from them and took away the disciples, reasoning daily in the school of Tyrannus. 10 This took place for two years, so that all who lived in Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks.

  • Boldness hallmark of Apostolic Preaching Acts 4:29 & Paul’s ministry Eph 6:19
  • NAU Acts 4:29 "And now, Lord, take note of their threats, and grant that Your bond-servants may speak Your word with all confidence,
  • NAU Ephesians 6:19 and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,
  • Unflinchingly…  pressed on in the middle of Jewish situation… to persuade… (gk. Convince by argument)
    • This isn’t blind faith…
    • Or dumb faith…
    • The truth of God is a intellectual reality
      • And a spiritual reality
  •  The msg to the Jews… Repent and believe… in their Messiah & God – Jesus
  •  Paul kept the message in front of them…
    • they were without excuse…
    • and their hearts hardened…
    • NAU Romans 9:18 So then He has mercy on whom He desires, and He hardens whom He desires.
    • NAU Hebrews 3:8 DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS AS WHEN THEY PROVOKED ME, AS IN THE DAY OF TRIAL IN THE WILDERNESS,
    • NAU Hebrews 3:13 But encourage one another day after day, as long as it is still called "Today," so that none of you will be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
    • NAU Hebrews 3:15 while it is said, "TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS, AS WHEN THEY PROVOKED ME."
    • NAU Hebrews 4:7 He again fixes a certain day, "Today," saying through David after so long a time just as has been said before, "TODAY IF YOU HEAR HIS VOICE, DO NOT HARDEN YOUR HEARTS."
    • The gospel has two effects… remember God’s Word never returns void… NAU Isaiah 55:11 So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.
    • NAU 2 Corinthians 2:15 For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; 16 to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life. And who is adequate for these things?
  • They were disobedient to the divine command… to know Jesus… repent and be redeemed…
  • NAU Mark 1:15 and saying, "The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel."
  • Speaking evil of “The Way” … early name for Christians… the Church…
    • Slander against the church
    • Against faith in Christ
    • Sound familiar?
  •  They continued… rebuffed in one spot… continue in another
  •  … continued to share for two years…
  • Many of the Seven churches of Revelation… and in Colosasae and Hierapolis… were born out of the tenacity and passion of Paul’s ministry in Ephesus…
  • Great Commission to a “T”… "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you…
  • Faithful disciples make… incredible evangelists
  • Tenacity teaches the imperative nature of the mission…
  • Declaration… shows commitment…
  • Declaration… points to the truth….

Confirmation

11 God was performing extraordinary miracles by the hands of Paul, 12 so that handkerchiefs or aprons were even carried from his body to the sick, and the diseases left them and the evil spirits went out.

  • With the New Testament not yet completed… there was no point of reference for Paul… hearers… Supporting his declaration
  • A standard feature of the apostolic preaching was to have it accompanied by authenticating miracles…
  • NAU Hebrews 2:3 how will we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, 4 God also testifying with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will.
  • It was the Spirit of God… authenticating his message… in power…
  •  God consistently empowers his messengers… and  credibility is still guaranteed by the Spirit… but after the Apostolic era it is the Spirit’s inspiration of Scripture… and the preacher’s consistency with the Revelation of God
  •  Confirmation of the message


Competition

13 But also some of the Jewish exorcists, who went from place to place, attempted to name over those who had the evil spirits the name of the Lord Jesus, saying, "I adjure you by Jesus whom Paul preaches." 14 Seven sons of one Sceva, a Jewish chief priest, were doing this. 15 And the evil spirit answered and said to them, "I recognize Jesus, and I know about Paul, but who are you?" 16 And the man, in whom was the evil spirit, leaped on them and subdued all of them and overpowered them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded.

  • Syncretism… test all the seems to be effective and incorporating into your practice…
  •  Kind of the New Age…
    • blending the ideas of Eastern religion
      • Chi
      • Zen
      • Karma
      • With the Christian faith…
  • They tried it in ancient times too…
    • Jewish exorcists (magicians)
    • Saw the power of Jesus name…
    • “Ancient magicians were syncretists who would borrow terms of any religion that sounded sufficiently strange to be deemed effective. These Jewish Exorcists of Ephesus were only plying their trade. Paul’s “spell” in Jesus’ name seemed effective for him, so they gave it a try.” (NAC: ACTS)
  •  Remember in Acts 8:18 Now when Simon saw that the Spirit was bestowed through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he offered them money,
    • Wrong motive…
    • … exorcist… = blind with an oath
    • Like getting into a fight and finding a bigger friend to help… (not as concerned with friendship… looking for battle (strength) ability
  • Misleading… co-opting of Jesus name for personal power… personal gain…
  • It is not about a bigger battle buddy… personal health or well-being… this is not a competition where we want to piece together a god…
  • This isn’t LEGO deity…
  • The Sons of Sceva… Sceva was a syncretistic Jewish “High Priest”… Remember the movie Catch Me If You Can…lawyer, doctor, pilot (all before age 21).
  •  So this Jewish “High Priest” was more of a conman… posing… as a man of God
  • Many in our world have “faked” the god thing… crafted him into their own deity… assembled like a puzzle… genuine competition for Jesus Christ…
  • There is more than one “religion” to follow… more than one road to walk… NAU Matthew 7:14 "For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.
  • The Competition will kill you…
  • Those you simply trust in their own view of god… our Jesus as part of a faith mosaic… do not come under the protection of God… they are vulnerable…

 

Conviction

17 This became known to all, both Jews and Greeks, who lived in Ephesus; and fear fell upon them all and the name of the Lord Jesus was being magnified. 18 Many also of those who had believed kept coming, confessing and disclosing their practices. 19 And many of those who practiced magic brought their books together and began burning them in the sight of everyone; and they counted up the price of them and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.

  • Word went out… to oppose Jesus Christ and his message and his power is to be exposed to the evil of the world…
  • So they turned from magic… just as the Thessalonians had turned from their idols…
  • NAU 1 Thessalonians 1:9 For they themselves report about us what kind of a reception we had with you, and how you turned to God from idols to serve a living and true God,
  • Notice… that coming to God means turning from something…
  • If it is hard to tell whether you changed direction, priority….  You may not have…
  •  If the things that this world offer still bring your praise, your worship, your dedication… you may be living a syncretistic faith and we know…
  • NAU Exodus 20:5 "You shall not worship them or serve them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me,
  • Belief is knowledge in action…
  •  They responded with a change…
  •  distanced themselves from the things God points to as detestable…
  • Deu 18:10 There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer, 11 or one who casts a spell, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead. 12 "For whoever does these things is detestable to the LORD; and because of these detestable things the LORD your God will drive them out before you.
  • So how do the new believers react…
    • And many of those who practiced magic brought their books together and began burning them in the sight of everyone; and they counted up the price of them and found it fifty thousand pieces of silver.
    • Change of life… old way burnt
    • NOT without cost!!... SCROLLS Expensive!
  • Approx 50,000 days of labour…
  • 137 years… of wages!!

Domination

  • We need to be Declarers…
    • Those who are bold
    • The who are prepared
    • Those who are committed
    • Those who believe
    • DECLARERS…!!
      • Does that define you?
  • The Lord empowered Paul and the apostles…
    • God’s Word is confirmed by the Spirit
    •  
    • We too are confirmed by the Spirit
    •  
    • The new believer is transformed by the Spirit
    •  
  • Competition…
    • Notice your competition…
      • What is the world promoting
      • What is New Age, Bahai, Hinduism, Liberal faiths…
      • No being an ostrich…
    • Notice the impact in your life
      • How are the sit-coms affecting you…
      • How are the advertisements…
      • How about human belief structures…
        • God of love (not of hell)
        • That was ok back then… things have changed
  •  Words of Power… Words of Conviction
    • Words that change lives…
    • Words that change your life…
    • The Spirit changes people…
    • Have you reacted that way…
    • Have you seen others?

     

DOMINATION

20 So the word of the Lord was growing mightily and prevailing.

  •  
  • Paul Declared God’s word… the Spirit Confirmed the message… the competition rose up and fell… the Spirit convicted them…
  • The triumph and power of Jesus Christ against all challengers…demonstrating the invincible might of the God’s Word…

Conclusion

Declaration

Confirmation

Competition

 Conviction

Domination

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