The ‘Next’ Mentality

Acts 17:32-34:  32 And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked, while others said, “We will hear you again on this matter.” 33 So Paul departed from among them. 34 However, some men joined him and believed, among them Dionysius the Areopagite, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

Find time today to read Acts chapter 17. In many ways it’s an age-old description of our modern times. Within the course of this one chapter the apostle Paul had traveled through five different cities, much on foot and some by sea. His mission? Promote the Gospel and Message of Jesus Christ, teach core doctrine, garner more believers for the Cause, and move forward.

How do we know that this was his mission? Throughout this chapter of Acts alone we see clearly that he daily encountered much more than most of us encounter on a daily basis in our discipleship to Christ. He taught in the local synagogues in an effort to win the Jews to salvation in the true Messiah. But then also purposed to spread the Good News to the Greek citizens, the Gentiles. And he went to the marketplace, where your average citizen could be found to show them the Way. Paul was endangered often–lied about, mistreated, beaten, misunderstood, run out of town! In all scenarios some mocked and stirred up trouble, some delayed to hear him again on the matter, but some men joined him. It’s safe to say, though, that had Paul been tripped up by those who rejected the Gospel, we in the western world, we Gentiles, would have never had an opportunity to even know of the hope in Christ Jesus!

I heard a preacher recently refer to it this way:  “Paul had a ‘next mentality’. When he had completed his assignment to share, teach, and reason with men and women about the Message, he turned and said ‘next’! Some joined, some rejected, but he knew he was not responsible for their response. He moved to the next lost people group.”

Let us be challenged to follow in Paul’s pattern. If you have shared the Gospel before, whether with a complete stranger, a family member or a personal friend, you’ve most likely experienced some rejection. But maybe, just maybe, you’ve experienced acceptance, as well. Take on Paul’s ‘next mentality’ today in your daily walk. Share the hope of Christ, lead the way, and trust God with the rest.

Yours for Souls,

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