Our theme for 2023 is “Turning the world upside down.” In Acts 17:6 it says, “When they did not find them, they began dragging Jason and some brethren before the city authorities, shouting, ‘These men who have upset the world have come here also.’” The apostle Paul and others preached the gospel of Jesus. It had an impact everywhere they went. In Acts 17, we see Paul preached the same gospel in Thessalonica, Berea, and Athens. Everywhere he went, souls were saved. There were also those who were upset with the truth. That is what happens when the word of God is preached.

We also see something else in Acts 17. Paul had a custom. The word “custom” according to Strong’s means, “to be used (by habit or conventionally)…” Wherever Paul went, he followed the same habits or customs. That was especially true when it came to finding people to share the gospel with. Notice the following examples in Acts 17.

  • “And according to Paul’s custom, he went to them, and for three Sabbaths reasoned with them from the scriptures.”
  • “The brethren immediately sent Paul and Silas away by night to Berea, and when they arrived, they went into the synagogue of the Jews.”
  • “So he was reasoning in the synagogue with the Jews and the God-fearing Gentiles, and in the market place every day with those who happened to be present.”

Paul’s customs of spreading the truth was successful. As we think about the new year, let us consider what customs we have individually to sharing the gospel. While sermons on evangelism can be preached regarding reaching the lost, every Christian should have a personal plan of making disciples of Christ. We already have many of the things we need to be successful given to us by God.

  • The power to save souls is only in the gospel, Romans 1:16. We merely have to share it.
  • We are to walk in a way that is worthy of the gospel according to Philippians 1:27. When we do that people will naturally become curious.
  • We are to worship and gather with the saints, Acts 2:42; Hebrews 10:25. As we dedicate time gathering together, the world will see a difference.
  • We are to pray without ceasing and for doors to be open, 1 Thessalonians 5:17; Colossians 4:2-6.

Paul certainly walked in a manner worthy of the gospel, was diligent in prayer, and worshiped with the saints. And he also had a plan whenever he went into a new city. The synagogue was a place Paul knew he would have a captive audience. He was also aware of his surroundings and where else he could find people. In Acts 16, he went to where the people were. In this case it was by the riverside, Acts 16:13. We must do the same. We must go to the people. We will have to reach out to others around us. How might we be able to do that? Below are some suggestions.

  • Always keep Bibles and invite cards with you. Leave some in your car and when opportunities arise, hand them out. Set a goal of how many you want to hand out each week and track it.
  • Use your social media accounts of spreading the truth.
  • Create a study once a month or once a quarter in your neighborhood, with other women, or men. Creating a study that is regular will stick long-term. 
  • Attend Bible studies that are already in place and invite someone to them. There’s a women’s Bible study at the building each Tuesday. There’s a Meet-Up Zoom study each Tuesday night for anyone to join.

Whatever you decide to do, do it with all your might! The Lord is with you and will bless your labors.

Benjamin Lee

I Can Do…So Can You