Paul entered the synagogue and spoke boldly there for three months, arguing persuasively about the kingdom of God. But some of them became obstinate; they refused to believe and publicly maligned the Way. So Paul left them. He took the disciples with him and had discussions daily in the lecture hall of Tyrannus. This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord. (Acts 19:8-10)
God has plans to draw His children closer. Have you considered the mystery of Jews not accepting Jesus as the Messiah when the Old Testament perfectly describes His life, death, and resurrection? Paul reveals a slice of the secret. “I want you to understand this mystery, dear brothers and sisters, so that you will not feel proud about yourselves. Some of the people of Israel have hard hearts, but this will last only until the full number of Gentiles comes to Christ.” (Romans 11:25)
God hardened Jewish hearts so they became obstinate and refused to listen and believe. Paul and other evangelists were forced to stop preaching to the Jews and tell non-Jews about Jesus. When the full number of Gentiles enter God’s kingdom, He will soften Jewish hearts.
The Gentiles were so excited to have Jesus save them from wrongdoings and negative emotions that in two years and three months, they spread the Gospel to everyone in the province of Asia, at that time an area the size of California.
Are we as excited about Jesus as the early Christians were? In this Christmas season as you decorate, shop, carol, bake, and wrap are you eager about spreading God’s love and giving Jesus the glory He deserves or are you in a conundrum wondering how you’ll get everything done? If you’re the latter, ask God to soften your heart and do less. Do what you can with joy so others will want the happiness that having a Savior brings.
Father, I praise you for sending Jesus to save me. Let me celebrate with a song in my heart and love for each person you’ve given me. Soften my heart. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.
2 thoughts on “Daily Devotional Acts 19:8-10 – Is your heart hardened? – Free online Bible study – Commentary in easy English – Day 618”
I have some questions. Why would God harden anyone’s heart? I do not understand part of the scripture that says; but this will last only until the full number of Gentiles comes to Christ. What is meant by the FULL NUMBER? I need some clarification.
I feel that whatever we are doing, we should do it with joy. I think this is especially true when we are celebrating the birth of Christ. This is the busiest time of the year for most Christians. Sometimes when we are trying to prepare for Christmas, we are not doing things with joy because there are never enough hours in the day. There was a period of time that I dreaded Christmas because it was so much work and I was stressed to the max trying to get it all done. I am a perfectionist which doesn’t help. I remember mom telling me to do less and enjoy more. I took her advice and tried to simplify. It made things better.
I love you Sis and know that we are both enjoying the things we are doing to prepare for Christmas with our families. Blessings today with all that you do.
Why God would harden anyone’s heart is a mystery. He hardened the hearts of the Jews so Paul and other Jews would leave their comfort zones and tell non-Jews about Jesus. Whenever Paul goes to a new city, he first finds the Jewish people by going to the temple. In one city there wasn’t a temple so he went to the river where a few Jews worshipped. He didn’t preach to the Gentiles until he was persecuted by the Jews. So if God hadn’t hardened Jewish hearts, no one would have told non-Jews about Jesus. We have to look to other Scriptures for clarification on what the FULL NUMBER of Gentiles means. My favorite verse for clarification is John 5:25 The hour is coming, it is even now, when the dead shall hear the voice of The Son of God, and they who listen shall live. After the resurrection and before the ascension Jesus went to Hades and preached the Gospel and those who listened to Him ascended to heaven with Him. I believe John 5:25 means that all the dead will hear Jesus’ voice and will have a chance to listen. At that point they must choose whether to believe and want Jesus as their savior. As John 1:12 says: But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God. So anyone who chooses to receive Him before or after they die will be included in the full number.
Again, this is my belief and others interpret the Scripture differently. You have to decide for yourself what the FULL NUMBER of Gentiles means.
Keep simplifying and love everything that you do. The masks you made for family and fixing my Gator shirt that I like so much are examples of sharing God’s love. God gave you a gift for sewing and will draw you to Himself through acts of love like that. I hope you recognized and felt His love while you were doing it. Thanks again. I love you, Sis.