- Acts 16:6-10
- Acts 16:6 (KJB)
- Now when they had gone throughout Phrygia and the region of Galatia, and
were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the word in Asia,
- Were forbidden - Restrained, stopped, or prevented
- After Paul and his company had gone through the areas of Galatia and
Phrygia visiting all the churches they had previously been involved with,
their next logical step would have been to go into the Roman province of
Asia which would have been directly west of Phrygia. Now this verse should
be a problem to those who believe in free will because they could have gone
there and preached at their own will. This verse teaches us that God has
certain timing and He controls what areas evangelism is going to take place.
Paul did eventually have a ministry there but God’s timing was not at this
time. God has everything planned and there is nothing left to man to do but
to fulfill God’s plan. This is what those who believe in free will have a
problem with that they are to obey God’s plan and not make up their own
plans. At that point, there may not have been any Elect in the area Paul
wanted to go in and that is why they were forbidden to preach the word as
they passed through. I am sure Paul wanted to preach that word but he had to
obey the Holy Spirit and preach where he was directed.
- Acts 16:7 (KJB)
- After they were come to Mysia, they assayed to go into Bithynia: but the
Spirit suffered them not.
- After they had passed through the province of Asia, they came to Mysia
which was a western peninsula on the Aegean sea. From there they wanted to
go northeast into the Roman province of Bithynia but the Spirit did not
allow them to go there. While they were in Mysia, they probably decided to
go to Bithynia and see if that is where the Holy Spirit wanted them to
minister but that was quashed. Paul knew he had a missionary burden on him
and did not want to sit around so he tried different places to minister to
see if the Lord would confirm the destination or send them elsewhere.
- Acts 16:8 (KJB)
- And they passing by Mysia came down to Troas.
- They came through Mysia and went to the town of Troas which was a port
city on the western tip of the peninsula. Since they could not go east, they
went in the other direction. I am sure Paul wanted to preach his heart out
in both Mysia and Asia.
- Acts 16:9 (KJB)
- And a vision appeared to Paul in the night; There stood a man of
Macedonia, and prayed him, saying, Come over into Macedonia, and help us.
- While Paul was in Troas, he may have been sleeping when he experienced a
vision by seeing a man who asked him to come to Macedonia and help them.
Since Paul was in a port city, he would have been able to catch a boat to go
west to the province of Macedonia. It is actually pronounced “Makedonia”
because in the Greek there is no soft “c” but only a “k”
which is kappa, pronounced like a hard “k.” There Paul would have an
increase in his ministry because he would be involved in establishing
churches there such as Philippi and Thessalonica and also where he would pen
some of his epistles. God began to change the direction of Paul’s ministry
from just preaching to establishing Christian churches which would prepared
Christians for the spread of the Gospel.
- Acts 16:10 (KJB)
- And after he had seen the vision, immediately we endeavoured to go into
Macedonia, assuredly gathering that the Lord had called us for to preach the
gospel unto them.
- Paul did not waste any time by throwing out a fleece or something like
that. As soon as he received the vision, he then sought to go forth into
Macedonia believing that the Lord had called him to preach the gospel there.
It seems in this passage that Luke had joined Paul because you will notice
when describing the journey, Luke uses the word “we” and “us.” Paul had
believed it was a preaching journey as before but because of his
faithfulness to the Gospel, God was now ready to take his ministry to the
next level and that is not only to preach but to start building Christian
centers for the purpose of increased evangelism by other believers. This
verse gives us a tremendous principle. Paul was faithful in his preaching of
the Gospel and obedient to the leading of the Holy Spirit. This means that
we Christians need to be obedient to the Lord in the small things and He
will enlarge our ministries if it is His will. We do not need to expand the
ministry or worry that our ministry is too small. What we need to concern
ourselves with is that our ministry is faithful, God will work out the