Paul had made it a mission from the beginning that if he were ever imprisoned, tortured, question, etc… that it would be for Christ and those that persecuted him would know it was for Christ. This seems obvious and easy, but in real life it isn’t.
When facing death, it is much easier to tell a “different truth.”
‘We were just tourists.’
‘We were visiting ‘family”
‘We were exploring the country’
Is it ever wrong to say these kinds of things? What is telling the truth brings someone’s death? I will explore that in the next post.
Paul’s life was clearly all about the gospel of Christ. He preached, prayed, lived and breathe the gospel. Because of this there were no questions. And when Paul was imprisoned and in chains, he didn’t see it as the gospel being stopped. He just had a new location to preach the gospel–in prison to the prison guards.
“It has become clear throughout the whole palace guard and to everyone else that I am in chains for Christ.”
There’s almost (not trying to be disrespectful to the situation), but a bit of humor here. “It has become clear…” I wonder if the guards were saying among themselves, “I wish that guy would just shut up about Jesus.”
“It has become clear…”
EVERYONE knew that Paul was imprisoned because of the gospel. Most prisoners more than likely told lies and stories and proclaimed their innocence, sure that they were probably unjustly imprisoned if others knew the truth. But the truth was clear from Paul. He was there for the gospel.
Paul lived the gospel out loud.
And when he was put in chains, the result was that others had more boldness to preach the gospel (Php 1:14). Somehow when someone trailblazes the difficult way, it is actually an inspiration to others. It’s the mystery that Tertullian speaks about, “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church.”
It’s the gospel unchained.