Seventeenth Sunday after Pentecost
“The Gospel of Christ”
Rev. Timothy D. Smith
7:30am & 9am Sunday, September 24, 2023 in the Sanctuary
Trinity Lutheran Church & School
As We Gather When Paul wrote to his co-worker Timothy that he was “bound with chains as a criminal” (2 Timothy 2:9), he knew well the situation he was in. Acts 16 relates the time that he was thrown in jail in Philippi without benefit of a trial. He was later jailed in Jerusalem and then Caesarea and finally at Rome, where he was under a type of house arrest for two years. The final chapter of Acts finds Paul as a captive one more time, accepting this imprisonment as a prelude to his death. He writes to Timothy “the time of my departure has come” (2 Timothy 4:6). In the centuries since Paul gave his prison witness, countless Christian men and women have been imprisoned for their Gospel witness. We are encouraged to be faithful witnesses in our time by Paul, who writes to his young associate Timothy: “Pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, steadfastness, gentleness. Fight the good fight of the faith” (1 Timothy 6:11–12a). Paul’s words from prison are good instruction for every situation!