Acts 22: Taking Advantage
Paul must’ve been an interesting man. In Acts 22, the story ends with him explaining to the Roman centurion that he was indeed a Roman citizen and therefore could not punished until he was legally condemned. Paul could have said that at the beginning of the conversation. He could have avoided this entirely unpleasant episode, but he did not for some reason. Perhaps he did not because it gave him an opportunity to witness. However, it did not end there for his opportunities.
Act 22:30 On the morrow, because he would have known the certainty wherefore he was accused of the Jews, he loosed him from his bands, and commanded the chief priests and all their council to appear, and brought Paul down, and set him before them.
Beyond this one opportunity, he was now going to have an opportunity to speak before a Council to share the good news of Jesus Christ with them. I don’t know about you, but when I think about witnessing opportunities, I generally don’t think about beginning them coming by being arrested.
That is part of what made Paul a remarkable missionary. He did not pass up any chance he got. Particularly in this situation, he had the right to remain silent. Although that was not a right in ancient Rome like it is today, nobody was pressuring him. He could have been arrested, brought to the Roman castle, quietly went inside, explained he was a Roman citizen and then set free. It doesn’t seem that the Romans were that upset about Paul originally. However, he recognized that on the stairway, he had a chance to speak to the people. Then, he ended up going before the Council because he had gone down this path of speaking.
How would be react in this situation? I would like to say that I would be so attentive to potential opportunities that I would take advantage of them in the way that Paul obviously did. God does put us in situations where we can be utilized, and we need to take advantage of those.