Acts 20:31 – “Therefore watch, and remember, that by the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears.”
Here in his parting address to the leaders of the Ephesian congregation, Paul leaves them with this admonition to “watch and remember.” What was it they were to watch for, and what is it they were to remember?
Acts 20:29-30 – “I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. “Men will rise up even from your own number and distort the truth to lure the disciples into following them.
They were to be watching for the false teachers that were sure to come. This is language that is reminiscent of the words of Yeshua to the disciples as he was sending them out two by two.
Matthew 10:16-17 – “Look, I’m sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as serpents and as innocent as doves. “Beware of them, because they will hand you over to local courts and flog you in their synagogues.
Whenever truth is declared, it creates a vortex of distortion which swirls around it as people are confronted with its light. Those who reject it try to hide from and conceal the light of truth because it reveals their error and exposes their weakness.
Yeshua illustrated this as he spoke to Nicodemus about the necessity of being born from above:
John 3:19-20 – “This is the judgment: The light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than the light because their deeds were evil. “For everyone who does evil hates the light and avoids it, so that his deeds may not be exposed.
If Yeshua and Paul were warning the first century believers of the dangers that were present to them from false teachers, how much more today do we need to be watchful for the darkness of error which can creep in unawares?
Remaining alert is most possible when we keep our focus on the One to whom we belong. When we become distracted is when we drop our guard. Paul says to watch and remember; when we remember who we are, we can build ourselves up. But when we remember who He is, what He has done, and what He can do, God gives us His strength to remain steadfast in the truth of his word.
Acts 20:32 – “And now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you an inheritance among all who are sanctified.
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