“Paul’s Prison Hospitality” – Paul in Lockdown – Part 2, Acts 28:16-31

Introduction
House arrest – “When we got to Rome, Paul was allowed to live by himself, with a soldier to guard him.” (Acts 28:16 NIV11)
Two years – “For two whole years Paul stayed there in his own rented house and welcomed all who came to see him.” (Acts 28:30 NIV11)
Last week – spreading encouragement, and prayer
This week our topic is hospitality – believe it or not!

QUESTION: “WHAT IS HOSPITALITY?”

Kindness to strangers; entertain as a stranger; entertain as a guest; to entertain; to lodge with; to place yourself under another.

1. Hospitality to Strangers
First meeting: Acts 28:17-20
Got them to come back
Second meeting: Acts 28:23-29
Got them thinking
Like God
Gen 2 & 3
Ps 23
Jesus
4,000; 5,000
Last Supper
Who should we host?
“Then Jesus said to his host, “When you give a luncheon or dinner, do not invite your friends, your brothers or sisters, your relatives, or your rich neighbors; if you do, they may invite you back and so you will be repaid. But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind,and you will be blessed. Although they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”” (Luke 14:12–14 NIV11)“Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it.” (Hebrews 13:2 NIV11)
📌 DISCUSSION: What hospitality can you offer to strangers? At the present time? Considering the restrictions we have?

2. Hospitality to your Friends
At one time or another Paul had many companions living with him:
Timothy
Went to Philippi – “I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered when I receive news about you.” (Philippians 2:19 NIV11)
Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother,” (Philemon 1:1 NIV11)
“Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, and Timothy our brother,” (Colossians 1:1 NIV11-GK); “Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus, To all God’s holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi,” (Philippians 1:1 NIV11)
Epaphras
In Rome with Paul –
“Epaphras, who is one of you and a servant of Christ Jesus, sends greetings. He is always wrestling in prayer for you, that you may stand firm in all the will of God, mature and fully assured.” (Colossians 4:12 NIV11)
Paul established a ‘prayer ministry’ in lockdown
“Epaphras, my fellow prisoner in Christ Jesus, sends you greetings.” (Philemon 1:23 NIV11)
Praying for Colossians (started church there, “You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant, who is a faithful minister of Christ on our behalf,” (Colossians 1:7 NIV11)
Onesimus
Converted while with Paul in his house arrest: “I appeal to you for my son Onesimus, who became my son while I was in chains.” (Philemon 1:10 NIV11)
Visited the church in Colossae: “He is coming with Onesimus, our faithful and dear brother, who is one of you. They will tell you everything that is happening here.” (Colossians 4:9 NIV11)
Went back to Philemon: “I am sending him—who is my very heart—back to you. I would have liked to keep him with me so that he could take your place in helping me while I am in chains for the gospel.” (Philemon 1:12–13 NIV11)
Tychicus
With Paul:
“Tychicus, the dear brother and faithful servant in the Lord, will tell you everything, so that you also may know how I am and what I am doing.” (Ephesians 6:21 NIV11)
“Tychicus will tell you all the news about me. He is a dear brother, a faithful minister and fellow servant in the Lord.” (Colossians 4:7 NIV11)
Sent to Ephesus and Colossae
Marcus (John Mark)
With Paul: “My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.)” (Colossians 4:10 NIV11)
Likely to go to Colossae: as above
Aristarchus
With Paul in prison: “My fellow prisoner Aristarchus sends you his greetings, as does Mark, the cousin of Barnabas. (You have received instructions about him; if he comes to you, welcome him.)” (Colossians 4:10 NIV11)
Demas
With Paul in prison: “Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings.” (Colossians 4:14 NIV11)
Fell: 2 Tim 4:10
Luke
With Paul in prison: “Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings.” (Colossians 4:14 NIV11)
Jesus (Justus)
With Paul in prison: “Jesus, who is called Justus, also sends greetings. These are the only Jews among my co-workers for the kingdom of God, and they have proved a comfort to me.” (Colossians 4:11 NIV11)
Epaphroditus
With Paul in prison:
“But I think it is necessary to send back to you Epaphroditus, my brother, co-worker and fellow soldier, who is also your messenger, whom you sent to take care of my needs.” (Philippians 2:25 NIV11)
“I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent.” (Philippians 4:18 NIV11)
The way he expresses himself about these people, and they way they were a team together indicates that their enforced lockdown together strengthened their bonds rather than weakened them.
Their time with Paul prepared them for God work through them

📌QUESTION: What is this time preparing you for?

Conclusion

📌QUIZ: What have we learned today?
List the names of all the people who shared Paul’s house arrest
Tell me some scriptures that demonstrate Biblical hospitality
Which scripture did we look at earlier that revealed the kinds of people we might invite in to enjoy some hospitality?

Going back to Jesus as host at the last supper…..Jn 13.2ff – host

Further scriptures: Romans 12:13; 1 Timothy 3:2; 5:10; Titus 1:8; 1 Peter 4:9; 3 John 8.

Summary of References to Paul’s housemates:
Timothy: Phil 1:1, 2:19; Philemon 1:1
Epaphras: Col 1:7, 4:12; Philemon 1:23
Onesimus: Philemon 1:10, 12-13; Col 4:9
Tychicus: Eph 6:21; Col 4:7
Marcus (John Mark): Col 4:10
Demas: Col 4:14; 2 Tim 4:10
Luke: Col 4:14
Jesus (Justus): Col 4:11
Epaphroditus: Phil 2:25, 4:18

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God bless, Malcolm