After King Agrippa heard Paul’s address and testimony, he revealed to Festus the Jews’ charges were groundless. However since the prisoner had requested to be judged by a higher court in Rome, Festus had no authority over the prisoner, and could not condemn him or set him free.
At the request of Paul, a Roman citizen, he would now be transferred to Rome where he would once again be called upon to share his testimony, and fulfill God’s plan for the apostle to advance the gospel beyond Judea.
“1 And when it was decided that we should sail to Italy, they delivered Paul and some other prisoners to one named Julius, a centurion of the Augustan Regiment.” (Acts 27:1)
Once Festus had prepared the letter to accompany Paul, which included the charges against the prisoner as well as details of the case against him, a Roman centurion named Julius was assigned the prisoners. The envoy would embark on a journey that would pose many challenges, as Satan endeavored to prevent the apostle from reaching his destination, where God’s kingdom inevitably would be furthered.
“2 So, entering a ship of Adramyttium, we put to sea, meaning to sail along the coasts of Asia. Aristarchus, a Macedonian of Thessalonica, was with us.” (Acts 27:2)
At Adramyttium, a seaport city on the Ægean Sea, the envoy which included Paul, Luke as well as Aristarchus, a fellow believer from Macedonia boarded a ship and set to sail north along the Asiatic coast toward the island of Cyprus.
“3 And the next day we landed at Sidon. And Julius treated Paul kindly and gave him liberty to go to his friends and receive care.” (Acts 27:3)
Sidon was about seventy miles north of Cæsarea, where the ship was anchored. Favorable to Paul, Julius, the Roman centurion in charge of the envoy allowed the apostle to go ashore and visit with disciples at Sidon.
“4 When we had put to sea from there, we sailed under the shelter of Cyprus, because the winds were contrary.” (Acts 27:4)
Fighting northwest winds that were contrary to the ship’s destination, the envoy sailed close to the coast where the wind would be less challenging, and allow the ship to continue sailing north, then west around Cyprus.
“5 And when we had sailed over the sea which is off Cilicia and Pamphylia, we came to Myra, a city of Lycia. 6 There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship sailing to Italy, and he put us on board.” (Acts 27:5-6)
After they had sailed passed Cilicia and Pamphylia, adjacent Asia Minor regions, the ship came to Myra, a well known seaport city where the envoy boarded another vessel headed for Italy. The larger, grain ship originated from Egypt was the second of three ships God used to deliver Paul to Rome, where the apostle would face Cæsar.
“7 When we had sailed slowly many days, and arrived with difficulty off Cnidus, the wind not permitting us to proceed, we sailed under the shelter of Crete off Salmone. 8 Passing it with difficulty, we came to a place called Fair Havens, near the city of Lasea.” (Acts 27:7-8)
The journey from Myra to Cnidus was about one hundred and forty miles. Again facing contrary winds, the voyage forced the ship off course to head south toward the island of Crete where they arrived at Fair Havens, a seaport city on the Mediterranean Sea, where Paul and the envoy would spend an extended period of time, waiting for favorable sailing weather. Let’s pray!
We thank you for your blessings in our lives and for your servant Luke,
We praise you Lord for his wisdom and for his works through this scripture,
We ask you Lord to inspire us to use these verses in our lives
As we grow in you through the teachings of your faithful apostle.
Lord we ask you to strengthen us each day as we endure through battles,
Allow us to praise and love each other through faith in you Jesus,
Shield us from evil through truth, the gospel, salvation and prayer,
Guide us to abide by your word as we spread your gospel to one and all
Becoming examples of faith through our character as we walk the narrow path.
God we pray that you will continue to bless us, to bless our lives and fill us with hope
We ask you Lord to guide our footsteps and lead us to the way everlasting,
Through faith in you Lord we seek salvation and a place with you in heaven
According to your word, your everlasting wisdom and strength.
May your will be done
In our lives, for your life.
We thank you for your love and all you bless us with each day.
This message was written by Daniel St.Pierre