"He lived there 2 whole years at his own expense an welcomed all who came to him, proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance."
BRAVEHEART is one of my top 10 movies. It's full of courage, battles, romance, intrigue, passion & lots of action! The one line that's consistently remembered from it, however, comes near the very end. William Wallace (the lead) has finally been arrested & is facing execution for treason. When an influential friend comes to plead for him to beg the king for mercy, he says he won't. "But you'll die. It will be awful," she protests. "Every man dies," he replies... "But not every man really lives."
Never has that saying been so true as with the life of Paul. A man who lived 110% all his days - from his Jesus-hating early years of persecuting the Believers... to his record-setting church-planting later days of Christian mission work - Paul gave his all.
I was reading the end of the book of ACTS today. Paul had quite a harrowing ordeal at sea - storms, shipwreck, snake attack, & finally safety. It's the stuff of a good movie! But the end seemed a bit disappointing (at least from a cinematic standpoint). It read: "He lived there 2 whole years at his own expense an welcomed all who came to him, proclaiming the kingdom of God and teaching about the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness and without hindrance." I wanted to know about his death. How'd he die? What happened? Was it awful or did he go peacefully? Paul eventually was executed, but we hear nothing of it in the New Testament. Why?
I think we should go back to William Wallace for insight. "Every man dies... but not every man really lives." Paul wasn't worried about dying. He wasn't concerned about it in the least. He'd entrusted himself to God's care. He WAS concerned with how he LIVED! And even in prison - every held on trumped-up charges - even thousands of miles away from home, he proclaimed the gospel and told others about Jesus. Right up to the very end.
That's what it means to truly live.