Sermons

Where it all began (Acts 16:5-34)

Nathan Herrlin, 2017-09-17
Part of the Chasing Happy series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

The way we tend to think about “happy”: “My happenings determine my happiness.”

A better way to think about “happy”:
“Happiness comes from changing my perspective, not changing my circumstances.”

Perspective - The lens through which I see my circumstances

“Suffering doesn’t have to dampen my joy,
it can actually increase it.”

Acts 16:5-34

5So the churches were strengthened in the faith, and increased in number daily. 6And they went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been forbidden of the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia; 7and when they were come over against Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia; and the Spirit of Jesus suffered them not; 8and passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. 9And a vision appeared to Paul in the night: There was a man of Macedonia standing, beseeching him, and saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us. 10And when he had seen the vision, straightway we sought to go forth into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them. 11Setting sail therefore from Troas, we made a straight course to Samothrace, and the day following to Neapolis; 12and from thence to Philippi, which is a city of Macedonia, the first of the district, a [Roman] colony: and we were in this city tarrying certain days. 13And on the sabbath day we went forth without the gate by a river side, where we supposed there was a place of prayer; and we sat down, and spake unto the women that were come together. 14And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple of the city of Thyatira, one that worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened to give heed unto the things which were spoken by Paul. 15And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide [there]. And she constrained us. 16And it came to pass, as we were going to the place of prayer, that a certain maid having a spirit of divination met us, who brought her masters much gain by soothsaying. 17The same following after Paul and us cried out, saying, These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim unto you the way of salvation. 18And this she did for many days. But Paul, being sore troubled, turned and said to the spirit, I charge thee in the name of Jesus Christ to come out of her. And it came out that very hour. 19But when her masters saw that the hope of their gain was gone, they laid hold on Paul and Silas, and dragged them into the marketplace before the rulers, 20and when they had brought them unto the magistrates, they said, These men, being Jews, do exceedingly trouble our city, 21and set forth customs which it is not lawful for us to receive, or to observe, being Romans. 22And the multitude rose up together against them: and the magistrates rent their garments off them, and commanded to beat them with rods. 23And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailor to keep them safely: 24who, having received such a charge, cast them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks. 25But about midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns unto God, and the prisoners were listening to them; 26and suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison-house were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and every one's bands were loosed. 27And the jailor, being roused out of sleep and seeing the prison doors open, drew his sword and was about to kill himself, supposing that the prisoners had escaped. 28But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here. 29And he called for lights and sprang in, and, trembling for fear, fell down before Paul and Silas, 30and brought them out and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved? 31And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus, and thou shalt be saved, thou and thy house. 32And they spake the word of the Lord unto him, with all that were in his house. 33And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, immediately. 34And he brought them up into his house, and set food before them, and rejoiced greatly, with all his house, having believed in God. (ASV)

Tags: happiness, joy, perspective

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