Unstoppable! 'The Challenge of the Resurrection of Jesus' — Acts 17:30-34

Saturday, September 7, 2024

[Paul, continuing his address to the council of the city of Athens:] "God overlooked people's ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead."

When they heard Paul speak about the resurrection of the dead, some laughed in contempt, but others said, "We want to hear more about this later." That ended Paul's discussion with them, but some joined him and became believers. Among them were Dionysius, a member of the council, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

— Acts 17:30-34 NLT

Key Thought

Paul knew that his core message of Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection was tough for people to believe in his day — as it is in our day. A crucified Messiah was a crazy idea to both Jews and Gentiles. The idea of someone being raised from the dead was outside most people's human experience. But, these concepts are crucial to the Good News of Jesus, and Paul taught them as such because people have to believe them to be saved. Paul not only taught that people must believe these events happened; he also invited people to participate in these events in their response to Jesus.* Yet, for those of us who believe and have shared with Jesus in death, burial, and resurrection, Paul's teaching is not only true; it is life-transforming!

* See the Related Scripture Readings below for more on these truths.

Today's Prayer

Thank you, God, for wrapping your salvation in human flesh in Jesus and that your way for me to respond to your grace involves my heart, soul, mind, and body! I thank you in Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 1 Corinthians 15:1-7; Romans 6:3-7
  • 1 Corinthians 1:17-25

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Illustration

Illustration of Acts 17:30-34 NLT — [Paul, continuing his address to the council of the city of Athens:] "God overlooked people's ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead."

When they heard Paul speak about the resurrection of the dead, some laughed in contempt, but others said, "We want to hear more about this later." That ended Paul's discussion with them, but some joined him and became believers. Among them were Dionysius, a member of the council, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

About This Devotional

Unstoppable! is a one-year devotional guide through the book of Acts. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage, a reflection and a prayer. The reflection opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges one to live for Jesus.

Unstoppable! is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.