Paul had spent two years in prison with no definite charges having been made against him. Festus didn't know what to do with Paul, so when King Agrippa arrived for a visit, he brought this terrifying Roman leader into the discussion concerning Paul's charges. King Agrippa was the great grandson of Herod the Great, who had slaughtered the babies of Bethlehem when Jesus was born.
King Agrippa, who was known as a cruel and ruthless ruler, agreed to hear what Paul had to say for himself.
I don't know about you, but if I had been in Paul's shoes, my knees would have been knocking, my blood pressure would have been rising and my heart would have been racing in fear. Dry mouth and anxiety may have prevented me from saying absolutely anything in front of the leader of the mafia of the ancient world.
Paul was in deep trouble with the governmental authorities and the words that came out of his mouth at this turbulent moment should change the way you and I face difficult people and undeserved accusations.
"I think myself happy, King Agrippa, because today I shall answer for myself before you concerning all the things of which I am accused by the Jews" (Acts 26:2, NKJV).
Did you read the first four words that came out of the mistreated Paul's mouth? "I think myself happy" was the declaration of this man who has influenced Christianity for nearly 2,000 years.
Paul teaches two distinct lessons with these four powerful words that he spoke with courage at one of the worst moments of his life.
First of all, his brave example demonstrates the fact that you are in charge of your own thought life even during the trials of life. You can change the way you think! Your thoughts do not have to reflect your circumstances, the events that you are dealing with or even your current imprisonment. Your thought life, especially when you are dealing with unfair treatment and adverse conditions, is of vital importance. If Paul can think himself happy, then so can you and I!
The second lesson that we are able to learn from the words of Paul is found hidden in the rich meaning of the word "happy." "Happy" is the Greek word makarios, which Jesus also used in the Sermon on the Mount in the teaching of the Beatitudes. Every time Jesus said, "Blessed are you, " He was using the word makarios.
Makarios does indeed mean "blessed" or "happy"—but it means more than that. Makarios also is defined as "joined to the names of God."
The authoritative reason that you are able to change the way that you think even when you despise your current circumstances is because you, my friend, are connected to the names of God!
If you are sick, you are connected to Jehovah Rapha—your Healer.
If you are in need, you are connected to Jehovah Jireh—your provider.
If you feel like you are going under, you are connected to Jehovah Nissi—your victor!
If you are confused, you are connected to Jehovah Shalom—your peace.
No matter what situation you have found yourself in today, you can think yourself happy because you are connected to the names of God.
You can change the way you view today! Listen as Carol McLeod reveals the secret.
Carol McLeod is an author and popular speaker at women's conferences and retreats, where she teaches the Word of God with great joy and enthusiasm. Carol encourages and empowers women with passionate and practical biblical messages mixed with her own special brand of hope and humor. She has written 10 books, including The Rooms of a Woman's Heart; Defiant Joy!; Holy Estrogen!; No More Ordinary; Refined; Joy For All Seasons; Let There Be Joy!; Pass the Joy, Please!; Guide Your Mind, Guard Your Heart, Grace Your Tongue; and Stormproof, which releases on March 1, 2019. Her teaching DVD, The Rooms of a Woman's Heart, won the Telly Award, a prestigious industry award for excellence in religious programming. You can also listen to Carol's "Jolt of Joy" program daily on the Charisma Podcast Network. Connect with Carol or inquire about her speaking to your group at carolmcleodministries.com.
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