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Hello my name is Jerral Campfield and this web site is dedicated to Moral Recognition Therapy using Biblical principles. Please come back often to join me in understanding Gods hands are outstretched still to forgive.

ACTS 27  E-mail
Contributed by Jerral Campfield   
Friday, 31 March 2017

Here Paul is getting to do his thing as he wanted to do when he was so mistreated by the religious leaders and even left for dead. King Agrippa and Festus felt like if Paul had not appealed to Caesar he would have not been bound up by the governor as a prisoner to go before Caesar. This is so much like many people they want their way and sure enough they have to pay a price.  
Acts 27 New King James Version (NKJV)
The Voyage to Rome Begins
27 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. Here he is a prisoner being contained by Julius a centurion of the Augustan Regiment. He is being watched by a professional guard of prisoners under the authority of Julius.So, entering a ship of Adramyttium, we put to sea, meaning to sail along the coasts of Asia. Here they are on the way to a sea port in Africa where they were taking merchandise or goods to the area.  Aristarchus, a Macedonian of Thessalonica, was with us. We see there are others traveling as prisoner and members of the crew managing the ship, so they had a good number of people aboard. (276) Paul knew some of the travelers, so I am sure being among these prisoners and the crew of the ship He had a burning testimony or what God did and was still doing in his life. And the next day we landed at Sidon. This was not too far from where they departed so they must have had a big load and rough sea.  And Julius treated Paul kindly and gave him liberty to go to his friends and receive care. Thank the Lord for what was going on for this Julius could have known what Paul had been through, since he was one of the guards in charge of the Prisoners, so has mercy toward him. Thank the Lord for the assurance the Lord gives us during times of great frustration, God makes Himself known to us. While in Sidon, Paul was able to go see his friends, now that is liberty, knowing he would not desert, but come back to continue on. Lord help us to see even in suffering you are with us. Here Paul is trusted as a prisoner to do what he was supposed to do. When we had put to sea from there, we sailed under the shelter of Cyprus, because the winds were contrary. Here we see all are back in the ship and they headed off again with a strong wind blowing. They are doing the best they can as sailors, not giving up going on.   And when we had sailed over the sea which is off Cilicia and Pamphylia, we came to Myra, a city of Lycia. There the centurion found an Alexandrian ship sailing to Italy, and he put us on board. Here we see them having to change ships, no doubt a bigger stronger ship. Alexandrian ships where used the most to transport corn to Rome and East India at the Red Sea to all parts of the Mediterranean and Italy.
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. This was a voyage that was very difficult under the windy conditions but they sailed on with much difficulty. It is like as Christians, life has a way of being very stormy, but God allows us to carry on, knowing as we abide in Him, we are safe and sound. Passing it with difficulty, we came to a place called Fair Havens, near the city of Lasea. What a harbor Fair Heaven was, for it was a pleasant place when faced with storms. As Christians, we are not at home, but when we are abiding in the Lord it is going to be ok. Storms are going to be a part of our lives and God is going to allow us to endure and find rest in the most difficult of circumstance until our final resting place in Heaven
Paul’s Warning Ignored
Now when much time had been spent, and sailing was now dangerous because the Fast was already over, Paul advised them, 10 saying, “Men, I perceive that this voyage will end with disaster and much loss, not only of the cargo and ship, but also our lives.” This was a bad time for sailing and Paul being the spokesman and leader was speaking up, letting them know he understands this was the time of Fasting during a religious festival, until it is over the day of atonement, the Jews celebrated September the 20th and here we are in for a disaster and much loss of cargo and life.  Here every one was going to suffer ill, not favorites. 11 Nevertheless the centurion was more persuaded by the helmsman and the owner of the ship than by the things spoken by Paul. Here the Centurion was more inclined to listen to the helmsman and the owner of the ship than to Paul. They felt Paul was not aware of how ships work, but here they are sea ware fairing men. So, Paul was not believed and they continued on. Remember Paul was very used to traveling in these waters as a missionary to the 7 Churches several times. He knew what he was talking about yet they continued. Notice how many respect ministers, but do not take their advice. 12 And because the harbor was not suitable to winter in, the majority advised to set sail from there also, if by any means they could reach Phoenix, a harbor of Crete opening toward the southwest and northwest, and winter there. How many times have we made decisions without the full knowledge of what could take place and here they must of taken a vote to see what they should do and the majority said, lets set sail where we have the most protection from the land masses.
In the Tempest
13 When the south wind blew softly, supposing that they had obtained their desire, putting out to sea, they sailed close by Crete. Here they are all at ease seeing a soft wind blowing, not bad at all and they are no doubt comfortable in going on and come close to this little Island of Crete. I am sure we are living in a time with the storms of life are raging like I have never seen before. 14 But not long after, a tempestuous head wind arose, called Euroclydon.[a]  Here they are just getting started storm Euroclydon, so called for its turbulence going in circles, like a whirlwind, is upon them. And the ship is caught up in it. 15 So when the ship was caught, and could not head into the wind, we let herdrive. What a paralyzing feeling the ship is helpless and out of control, controlled by the wind. It is so easy to be carried about with the wind of many doctrines thinking man can set their own doctrines and wanting all Churches to come together regardless of what they believe. This is affecting the Churches around the world as ISIS and the United Council of Churches are opening their doors to anyone regardless of the evil they may be engaged in. Lord help us to see the way, truth and life contained in your word and believe, repent and turn going toward the storm, to keep pressing on. 16 And running under the shelter of an island called Clauda,[b] we secured the skiff with difficulty. Here they are seen working feverishly to take down the sails, so there is no resistance to the wind and they can go where ever the wind takes them. It like so many things we get caught up in and the wickedness is going to capsizes our lives leaving us a wreck. The wages of sin is death so Lord help us to understand the importance of staying put in the vine; Jesus. 17 When they had taken it on board, they used cables to undergird the ship; and fearing lest they should run aground on the Syrtis[c] Sands, they struck sail and so were driven.Here they are doing all they could possible do to secure the ship from letting it break apart and end up on the shores. They continued on out to sea thinking that is the safest place to be. As most ships in the harbor during the storm set out to sea, to prevent them from battering themselves in the ports tied up. We saw this in Hawaii during a hurricane on our 25th wedding anniversary.  So here they are in the open seas still tempest tossed.  18 And because we were exceedingly tempest-tossed, the next day they lightened the ship. Here they are wanting to make sure the load is lightened up, so begin to toss more things over board.

19 On the third day we threw the ship’s tackle overboard with our own hands. Now here they are not knowing what is best and casting even what is needed the most, casting all overboard into the sea. How many times have we come to the place during the storm we want to cast aside our faith that is able to carry us through the storm? Lord help us to know how to abide in You so we are able to relax in Your everlasting arms that are outstretched to us all still.  20 Now when neither sun nor stars appeared for many days, and no small tempest beat on us, all hope that we would be saved was finally given up. Hope is gone the storm blocks out the sun and stars, so no way of navigating to know the direction they are traveling, so what to do is beyond them. 21 But after long abstinence from food, then Paul stood in the midst of them and said, “Men, you should have listened to me, and not have sailed from Crete and incurred this disaster and loss. Here we see 276 people whose lives are in the balances and the food is gone for they do doubt threw even some of that over board and Paul has the audacity to remind them of what he said earlier, we should off not set sail and here we are at risk of losing our lives. 22 And now I urge you to take heart, for there will be no loss of life among you, but only of the ship. You did not listen to me then, but listen now and take heart, for we are not going to die, but the Ship is going to be destroyed.  23 For there stood by me this night an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I serve, 24 saying, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must be brought before Caesar; and indeed God has granted you all those who sail with you.’ The Lord ministered to me; we all have an individual relationship with God and Paul’s relationship was so bright it blinded him and he was in the worst storm a person could go through. I know God whom I serve is able to protect us all, for I am going to go before Caesar and God, He has given me the pleasure to be with you all, as God is going to provide safety, He is able to overcome our fears. 25 Therefore take heart, men, for I believe God that it will be just as it was told me. Notice he was talking about what God said to him and wanted them to be assured they were in God’s hands during the storm. Here God appears to him as a prisoner being in hold; God spirit has no limitation and is always present even in the darkest of nights. God is sparing wicked people for the good of good people and He is still reaching out to those that are lost. 26 However, we must run aground on a certain island.” We are going to run aground on an Island for the pilot has lost all control, but you will be safe. It is during the storm that God speaks the loudest saying to us it is ok, it will soon be over. God’s spirit is not lost in the trying times of man, but always alert in control of what needs to happen.  As people in the world we are seeing terrorism and lawlessness seeming to abound and people are living in fear, who is going to be next. 27 Now when the fourteenth night had come, as we were driven up and down in the Adriatic Sea, about midnight the sailors sensed that they were drawing near some land. Thank the Lord for experienced sea men, they have a way of determining how close they are to the land or rocks.  28 And they took soundings and found it to be twenty fathoms; and when they had gone a little farther, they took soundings again and found it to be fifteen fathoms.  Their senses are working so take a measure of how deep the water was by the sound of a depth finder. 1st at 20 fathoms and going further 15 fathoms.   29 Then, fearing lest we should run aground on the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern, and prayed for day to come. Thank the Lord for hope and they had hope in the anchor, not in God. Lord help us to see the anchor of our souls going ship wreck is in You and Your alone. Not in people or things, not in gods of our choosing, but our creator God who created us to make wise decisions to trust and obey Him.30 And as the sailors were seeking to escape from the ship, when they had let down the skiff into the sea, under pretense of putting out anchors from the prow, 31 Paul said to the centurion and the soldiers, “Unless these men stay in the ship, you cannot be saved.” Here they are doing what is only natural, get off the boat and swim to safety, Paul said to the Centurion and all aboard stay in the Boat. Lord help us regardless of how ugly the storm and how big the Church, never to go it alone. We need the safety of togetherness in a vessel. That’s trusting God and not the circumstances, for God wants to take us through all our troubles and problems. 32 Then the soldiers cut away the ropes of the skiff and let it fall off. Now we see them begin to trust Paul and cut away the hindrance’s and let it go where it wanted to go. Lord help us to turn loose of all that entangles us in the web of sin, so we can be free to rest in Your everlasting arms.

33 And as day was about to dawn, Paul implored them all to take food, saying, “Today is the fourteenth day you have waited and continued without food, and eaten nothing. What a statement Paul makes here, for he wants them to be healthy and take some food with them, but make sure your disciplined in how much.  34 Therefore I urge you to take nourishment, for this is for your survival, since not a hair will fall from the head of any of you.” What a word of assurance he gave to all, for it is necessary to eat when the times are the toughest for us in life. Like the loose of a loved one, or during a time of unexpected loose of another’s life. Lord help us to know the power of food during emergencies.  35 And when he had said these things, he took bread and gave thanks to God in the presence of them all; and when he had broken it he began to eat.  What a show of who Paul was putting his hope, faith, reverence, worship in to hear his prayers. He knew his spirit needed refreshment at all times, so wanted to let others have the same opportunity of communion. Lord may our actions be an example of who we are and who we are representing. Paul was showing he was thankful for life now and life that was before them. 36 Then they were all encouraged, and also took food themselves. Lord help us to always want to give blessing and not get bitter and always find fault in something. Here they are all encouraged for they have given themselves up to rejoicing for food now and life latter. 37 And in all we were two hundred and seventy-six persons on the ship. This was not just a fishing boat but a cargo carrying boat, expected to continue working as they carried 275 people as well.  38 So when they had eaten enough, they lightened the ship and threw out the wheat into the sea. What a thought had eaten enough, they threw the rest into the sea. What a testimony of Gods provision and the need to throw the rest into the sea where someone else could use it, like  sea animals because it was exposed.

Shipwrecked on Malta

39 When it was day, they did not recognize the land; but they observed a bay with a beach, onto which they planned to run the ship if possible. It is great to have the sense of mind needed to avert any more disaster and here they see a safe place to run aground if possible. Lord help us to always have hope that all is going to work out ok. 40 And they let go the anchors and left them in the sea, meanwhile loosing the rudder ropes; and they hoisted the mainsail to the wind and made for shore. They loosen the ropes and are at the mercy of the wind and waves knowing they are going to be washed ashore. Lord help us to know no harm is going to be able to destroy our lives, when we are totally giving our lives over totally to the Lords will. 41 But striking a place where two seas met, they ran the ship aground; and the prow stuck fast and remained immovable, but the stern was being broken up by the violence of the waves. It is never easy to face reality of what could take place in an emergency and here they are in an emergency that only God could keep them save. They are grounded stuck on the beach and the stern broken up and the wind breaking the remaining part of the ship.

42 And the soldiers’ plan was to kill the prisoners, lest any of them should swim away and escape. 43 But the centurion, wanting to save Paul, kept them from their purpose, and commanded that those who could swim should jump overboard first and get to land, 44 and the rest, some on boards and some on parts of the ship. Here we are seeing the soldiers want to make sure the prisoners are all killed with none escaping, but the Centurion wanting to make sure Paul was safe to go before Caesar was able to do so. He commanded those that could swim, which was common for many to be able to swim and those who could not get ahold of some of the boards broken from the ship, so they could be used to help stay afloat to be safe. And so it was that they all escaped safely to land. What a story of salvation that has always been available to anyone riding this ship the Lord has placed us in around the world, for people still have the opportunity to be safe and sound, regardless of our lawlessness and how bad it gets. All we have to do is make sure we understand the power of the Lord, who created us to become more and more like Him during the storms of life. May we abide in the vine, and hang on to the way, truth and life He has favored us with, so we can get to that place of safety in the Lords everlasting arms, in His heavenly home! 

Copyright 2005 Jerral Campfield, All rights reserved.