Friday, July 24, 2015

Paul: Prisoner, Leader

Thoughts This Week

     I see a lot of Christian leaders around America like Joel Osteen. They are utilizing motivational techniques and leadership skills contrary to the examples of the Bible. There goals are to get butts in seats and make people feel good. They tell you what you want to hear, not what the Bible says you need to hear. As I read through the final chapters in the Book of Acts, I see what it means to be a Christian leader. Paul is heading out to Rome as a prisoner and by the time he gets to Rome he shown us the Biblical examples of leadership. 

     As Acts 27 begins, Paul is leaving as a prisoner toward Rome. You sense here that Festus and King Agrippa have a lot of respect for Paul. Paul is granted company and aide for the journey. There is also a centurion present. Like other centurions this one also proves wise and able in his judgment and duties, for the most part, and is a significant character during the rest of Acts.

     Paul in verse 10 begins his transition to a leader and prophecies: "Men, I perceive that this voyage will end with disaster and much loss, not only of the cargo and ship, but also our lives." Though the centurion is wise later on, here faith evades him and he decides not to heed Paul's warning. Shortly after setting sail the ship encounters a tempest. 

     The ship is tossed around in the tempest and the crew struggle to keep it in tact. The crew grows hungry and desperate. Paul, the prisoner, in verse begins to show how it is to lead and says:

  • "Men, you should have listened to me, and not have sailed from Crete and incurred this disaster and loss. And now I urge you to take heart, for there will be no loss of life among you, but only of the ship. For there stood by me this night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve, saying, 'Do not be afraid, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar; and indeed God has granted you all those who sail with you.' Therefore take heart, men, for I believe God that it will be just as it was told to me."Acts 27:21b-25

     Paul as a leader shows confidence, faith in God, comfort and instruction. He doesn't give them false hope or vague inspiration. He doesn't say that if they have faith in themselves they will be successful, like so many "Christian" motivational speakers. Further in the chapter Paul instructs them to eat and be nourished. He is concerned for their safety as any leader should be. The crew eats and as a result they are encouraged, another sign of a Godly leader. 

    Paul is such a great example to all Christians. He shows what it means to be a Godly man and leader. He tells us what we need to hear because of his love and concern for us. He doesn't tell us what we want to hear, or give us some false hope or promise. He requires our obedience for survival and our trust in the Word of God. This type of leadership can be difficult to respond to in this age. Most people just want to hear about how good we are, and can be, and how we will prosper in the future. But the Bible and Godly leaders are concerned about our eternal well being. How we may struggle in this world by our obedience and following of His Word. That in the end, before God, we will of been following the right kind of leaders. 


  1. Thanks for your time and spreading of the true Word.

    1. Thanks a lot. Mention in my first and second post that I have to do a lot of self study, sermon audios since my work schedule is so crazy. Found this to be a good use of notes and sharing with others. Thank you for the words of encouragement.

  2. Double portions, when blessed with, can come as: sunsets, hugs from our children, kiss from a spouse, missed auto accident, call from a friend, peace of mind, a new good Bible study. Not just a huge bonus at work. My side thought.

    1. My thoughts exactly! Thanks for your input.