Much of this chapter is self explanatory, though there are fine points to be learned by deeper study than we typically do here. But one thing I would like to bring out is at the very beginning of the chapter.
After Ananias the high priest, in a fit of rage orders that Paul be struck in the mouth and he responds with, “God will strike you, you whitewashed wall! You sit there to judge me according to the law, yet you yourself violate the law by commanding that I be struck!”, those standing near Paul chastise him for insulting “God’s high priest”.
Paul’s response was interesting to me. My inclination would have been something like, “Well, it’s true! He is a hypocrite and was wrong to order them to hit me, a man who has not been found guilty of any crime.” So why do you think Paul did what he did? He said, “Brothers, I did not realize that he was the high priest; for it is written: ‘Do not speak evil about the ruler of your people.’ ”
Have you heard the phrase, “Respect the office”? Even if you don’t respect the man, you should respect the office. That’s why it’s always a good idea, if you’re ever driving and get pulled over by a policeman, to address him or her as “Officer”, or “Sir” or “Ma’am”. Even if you think you didn’t do anything wrong. Respect the office.
That’s what Paul was doing. He was demonstrating that the office of the High Priest was worthy of respect, and he did not want to start a precedent of disrespecting that office.
Have a Merry Christmas. This is a day to celebrate the birth of the Messiah. I know that for some of us, Christmas is not a particularly happy time because of family, financial or other circumstances. I get that. But focus on the birth of the Savior. That is great motivation to celebrate.
If you’d like to give me a Christmas gift, how about heading over to LifespringMedia.com/love, and clicking on the link I’ve set up for you there to go write an honest review in the iTunes store for the LSFAB? It won’t cost you anything but a couple of minutes. Thanks!
In addition to the LSFAB, I’m also posting episodes of the Lifespring! WhyChristmas show this week. Check them out at LifespringMedia.com. I posted a video version of one of the episodes on my YouTube channel, in case you’d like to check that out, too. Just go to youtube.com/lifespringpodcast.