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16 So when Paul’s sister’s son heard of their ambush, he went and entered the barracks and told Paul. 17 Then Paul called one of the centurions to him and said, “Take this young man to the commander, for he has something to tell him.” 18 So he took him and brought him to the commander and said, “Paul the prisoner called me to him and asked me to bring this young man to you. He has something to say to you.” 19 Then the commander took him by the hand, went aside, and asked privately, “What is it that you have to tell me?” 20 And he said, “The Jews have agreed to ask that you bring Paul down to the council tomorrow, as though they were going to inquire more fully about him. 21 But do not yield to them, for more than forty of them lie in wait for him, men who have bound themselves by an oath that they will neither eat nor drink till they have killed him; and now they are ready, waiting for the promise from you.” 22 So the commander let the young man depart, and commanded him, “Tell no one that you have revealed these things to me.” 

 

Verses 16-22 tell of God’s providence in delivering Paul from those who plotted to kill him.  

23:16 

So when Paul’s sister’s son heard of their ambush, he went and entered the barracks and told Paul. 

Paul’s sister’s son heard of the plot to kill Paul and reported it to him in the barracks. Since the apostle was under protective custody, the soldiers allowed his nephew to visit him.  

23:17 

Then Paul called one of the centurions to him and said, “Take this young man to the commander, for he has something to tell him.” 

Paul asked one of the centurions to inform the Roman commander of the plot by sending his nephew.  

23:18 

So he took him and brought him to the commander and said, “Paul the prisoner called me to him and asked me to bring this young man to you. He has something to say to you.” 

The centurion took Paul’s nephew to the Roman commander and informed him that Paul said that he had “something to say” to him.  

23:19 

Then the commander took him by the hand, went aside, and asked privately, “What is it that you have to tell me?” 

The commander took Paul’s nephew by the hand, “went aside,” and asked him what he had to tell him.  

23:20 

And he [Paul’s nephew] said, “The Jews have agreed to ask that you bring Paul down to the council tomorrow, as though they were going to inquire more fully about him. 

Paul’s nephew disclosed the plot to the commander, giving details about the council’s timing and involvement in the scheme.  

23:21 

But do not yield to them, for more than forty of them lie in wait for him, men who have bound themselves by an oath that they will neither eat nor drink till they have killed him; and now they are ready, waiting for the promise from you.” 

Paul’s nephew informed the commander about the oath of those who would like to assassinate Paul.  

23:22 

So the commander let the young man depart, and commanded him, “Tell no one that you have revealed these things to me.” 

The commander ordered Paul’s nephew not to reveal to anyone that he had told him about the plot.  

PRINCIPLE: 

God uses small things to accomplish His purposes.  

APPLICATION: 

As Paul sat in jail, he must have wondered what God was doing with his life, but the Lord intervened in his situation by allowing his nephew to overhear a plot to kill Paul. Watching God’s plan in action was a great relief for Paul. Christians need to take notice of God’s sovereign actions in their lives.  

  

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