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For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves!

Overview

Acts20

Part 1 Acts 20:17-38

Key verse!

Paul said: “After my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock,to draw away the disciples, after themselves!”

Acts 20:17-24
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From Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called for the elders of the church.
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And when they had come to him, he said to them: "You know, from the first day that I came to Asia, in what manner I always lived among you,
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"serving the Lord with all humility, with many tears and trials which happened to me by the plotting of the Jews;
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"how I kept back nothing that was helpful, but proclaimed it to you, and taught you publicly and from house to house,
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"testifying to Jews, and also to Greeks, repentance toward God and faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
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"And see, now I go bound in the spirit to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that will happen to me there,
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"except that the Holy Spirit testifies in every city, saying that chains and tribulations await me.
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"But none of these things move me; nor do I count my life dear to myself, so that I may finish my race with joy, and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.

In this passage, Paul reminds the Ephesian elders of the time that he had spent with them.

  • Paul met with the Ephesian elders, to warn them, about what was going to happen, after his departure.
    He reminded them, of the way he lived, when he was with them, and that the Jews, had plotted against him.
  • Paul had taught them publicly, and from house to house, and had held back nothing, from them. He testified to the Jews, and also to the Gentile (Greeks), repentance toward God, and faith, toward our Lord Jesus Christ.
  • He was bound in the spirit, to go to Jerusalem, not knowing the things that would happen to him there, "except, that the Holy Spirit testified in every city, saying chains, and tribulations were awaiting him."
  • He said, that none of these things moved him; and that he did not count own his life, to be dear to himself.
  • The only thing that was important to him, was to finish his race with joy, and to fulfill, the ministry, which he received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel, of the grace of God.

The way Paul lived is an example of how we should live today!

Acts 20:25-31
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"And indeed, now I know that you all, among whom I have gone preaching the kingdom of God, will see my face no more.
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"Therefore I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men.
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"For I have not shunned to declare to you the whole counsel of God.
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"Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.
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"For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock.
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"Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves.
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"Therefore watch, and remember that for three years I did not cease to warn everyone night and day with tears.

In this passage, Paul warned the elders about the savage wolves, that were going to come in, among them!

  • Paul told them that they would see his face, no more!
  • He said that he was innocent, of the blood of all men, because he had declared to them, the whole counsel of God.
  • Sound Doctrine, which is the ‘Whole counsel of God, is found in the four Gospels, and the New Testament letters of Paul, James, Peter, John and Jude!
  • Paul warned them, that they must take heed to themselves, and to all the flock, because the Holy Spirit has made them overseers, to shepherd, the church of God!
  • Paul told them, that he knew that after his departure, savage wolves, would come in among them, not sparing the flock.
  • And that from among them, men would rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples, after themselves.
  • He admonished them, to watch, and remember that for three years, he did not cease, to warn everyone, night and day, with tears.

After Paul was taken home, to heaven, these things did actually happen. The savage wolves, did come in!

Even now, we need to be on guard, against these savage wolves!

Acts 20:32-35
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"So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.
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"I have coveted no one's silver or gold or apparel.
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"Yes, you yourselves know that these hands have provided for my necessities, and for those who were with me.
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"I have shown you in every way, by laboring like this, that you must support the weak. And remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, 'It is more blessed to give than to receive.'"

In this passage, Paul commends the elders, to the grace of God!

  • He reminds them, that he had labored, to provide for his own needs (necessities), and for those who were with him. Paul had shown in every way, by laboring like this, that you must, support the weak.
  • He told them to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He said, “It is more blessed to give, than to receive!” These words of Jesus are still true, for us today!

It really is, more blessed to give, than to receive!

Acts 20:36-38
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And when he had said these things, he knelt down and prayed with them all.
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Then they all wept freely, and fell on Paul's neck and kissed him,
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sorrowing most of all for the words which he spoke, that they would see his face no more. And they accompanied him to the ship.

In this passage, Paul prayed with the elders!

  • He knelt down and prayed with them all.
  • Then, they all wept freely, and fell on Paul's neck, and kissed him!
  • They were sorrowing, most of all, that they would see his face, no more.
  • Then, they accompanied him to the ship.

Today, the very most important thing we can do, is to pray!

And, we need to have the kind of love for each other, that they had for Paul!


The next part of this study, is 2 Timothy 4:

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine!"