11/23/23 Longwindedness?

READING: Acts 20-22

Sometimes the Word makes me laugh a bit—like today’s story of a boy who fell out a window. My former professor and later colleague at Southern Seminary, John Polhill, summarized the story of Eutychus in today’s reading in this way: 

One can sympathize with the lad. A warm spring evening, a room filled with torches burning up the oxygen supply, a long-winded preacher going into the wee hours of the morning and probably long past the lad’s normal bedtime—all these factors conspired against the youth. He probably had taken refuge in the window to catch a breath of fresh air, fighting his drowsiness. That effort, however, brought disastrous results. He fell asleep, lost his perch, and tumbled from the third story to the ground below. This, of course, was not a laughing matter. The fall evidently killed him. It could only be viewed with humor retrospectively in light of its happy ending because through the apostle, God turned tragedy into joy.*

What catches my attention, though, is the matter-of-fact way Paul dealt with this apparent tragedy. He went down, embraced the boy, returned to eat a meal with the believers, and then kept talking again until dawn!  Paul apparently had much more to say, and his listeners apparently had much more willingness to listen. Longwindedness is not longwindedness when you’re preaching the Word with power and zeal.  

PERSONAL REFLECTION: How well do you listen to the preached Word?     

PRAYER: “Help me, God, to be alert to hear Your Word.” 


 *Polhill, J. B. (1992). Acts (Vol. 26, p. 418). Broadman & Holman Publishers.

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