Friday, February 10, 2017


(Reposted from 7/17/11)
Today’s Bible Reading:  Leviticus 13-14, Acts 17
Topic: Evangelism

SCRIPTURE: Acts 17:22-23

22 Then Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I perceive that in all things you are very religious; 23 for as I was passing through and considering the objects of your worship, I even found an altar with this inscription:


Therefore, the One whom you worship without knowing, Him I proclaim to you.
 (Acts 17:22-23 NKJV)


This passage finds the Apostle Paul in GreeceAthens was the world center of intellectualism and philosophical thought; and here, the intellectually astute Paul demonstrates an important lesson in evangelism:  Adapt the message to the culture you are trying to reach. 

Paul recognized at least two important things about the Greeks in Athens.  First, they were a thoughtful people who were not intimidated by new ideas.  They enjoyed debating philosophy and were willing to have their minds opened to something new and different.  Secondly, they were a very religious people.  Greek mythology provided the means by which they could explain much of the unknown.  Their culture was formed by religiously explaining things by the gods.  If there was something in nature or human relations they couldn’t understand, they would make up a new god to explain it.  They had a god for virtually everything; and if that wasn’t enough, they even erected an idol to the “unknown god” just in case.

Paul astutely used these aspects of their own culture to tailor his message of the gospel of Christ:  “Let me tell you about this god whose name you do not know.  He is not just another god, He is the God…  He does not have to remain unknown, but can be known to you.”      


When we set about to carry on with the commission to go into all the world and share the Gospel—to take the message of the love of God and salvation through His Son to our fellow men and women either next door or to other lands, we will be wise to frame our message in cultural terms people will understand and relate to.  But the most important bit of understanding we gain from Paul’s experience in Athens is not just a tactical technique.  You see, it isn’t that we learn the “tactic” of adapting the message to the culture, it is that the Gospel of Jesus Christ IS adaptable to any culture.


Lord, give me the wisdom by Your Holy Spirit to proclaim Your Gospel well, that You may become “known” to all. 
In Jesus’ name.  Amen.  -AP

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