In Acts 17, Paul’s reputation precedes him. He arrives in Thessalonica and preaches for three weeks. Just as whenever and wherever the Gospel is preached, some believed and some did not. The unbeliever is scarcely docile. These unbelieving Jews are envious, because all those Greeks left the synagogue and they start up a riot. Why did they gather a mob? Simply due to the fact that their numbers dropped. Numbers are no sign of God’s favor or lack of God’s favor. Paul and Silas are likely being protected, so Jason takes the brunt of the punishment. They drag him down the street for a little mob justice. They take him to the rulers of the city where they make two accusations: These men have turned the world upside down, and will do the same here. Matters are even worse because their allegiance is not to Caesar but another king–Jesus.
I am full of sorrow and anguish that these accusations would never be made today. The world has turned the church upside down. The modern church has not the spiritual strength to turn over a gumball, much less the world. Oh, how our churches are so highly adorned but little anointed! We sing the same songs as the world, watch the same movies, dress the same, and read the same books! The Jews knew with Paul in town, nothing would ever be the same. Two men preaching for three weeks caused this kind of mob. We have over 30 Southern Baptist churches in two counties; yet, no one is dragging us down the street making this kind of accusation. What has changed? Christians are undisciplined, undevoted, and uninterested.
This mob knew that the allegiance of these Christians was not with Caesar but with Jesus. The U.S. government is free and will pass any law they deem necessary; however, I have news for them: our primary allegiance is not to the red, white, and blue, but to the crimson tide that flowed down Calvary. We serve another King. Our King is coming! Caesars and presidents come and go, but the Lord Jesus will reign forever.
There is a tremendous need for turnover. Beloved, we must repent and get right with God! If we do not turn the world upside down with the Gospel, then the world will go to hell. Let us endeavor, with open Bibles on bended knees of prayer, with lips sharing Jesus, to see these accusations made again.
Father, turn us over, that we may be empowered through your Spirit to turn this world upside down once again!In Jesus Name, Amen.