They stoned Paul and dragged him outside the city, thinking he was dead. Acts 14:19 (Acts 14:8-20)
In Lystra thar sat ah man who be lame. He whar that way from birth. Tha feller ne’er walked ah tall. But he listened ter Saul Paul speaking and when tha apostle looked straight at tha chap and seen he believed in tha message of tha Son and possessed faith ter be healed, Saul Paul called out, “Stand up, man! On your feet!” At that, the man jumped up and began ter walk.
Oh that we might have that sort of faith. Oh that we might believe with tha faith of Saul Paul and go about healing folks through tha powerful name of tha Son. We kin, ya know, fer tha Son said:
“Very truly I tell you,” said tha Son, “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” (John 14:12-14)
“As you go about proclaim that the kingdom of heaven has come near. Heal the sick. Raise the dead. Cleanse those who have leprosy. Drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.” (Matthew 10:7-8)
Ter day ah passel of folks claim ter be able ter heal in tha name and power of tha Son, but in many cases tha evidence of such miracles be lacking in and fer good reason: if ah feller whar ter make ah name fer himself by calling on tha name of tha Son and folks be healed, that chap would be raised up and worshiped.
Fact be, this whar exactly tha sort of thing that happened ter Saul Paul.
When the crowd seen what Saul Paul done, they shouted in thar native tongue, “The gods have come down to us in human form!” Tha crowd called Barnabas, Zeus. Tha crowd called Saul Paul, Hermes, on account of he whar tha chief speaker. The priest of Zeus brought bulls and wreaths ter the city gates because he and tha crowd wanted ter offer sacrifices ter Saul Paul and Barnabas.
Appalled at such adoration which be reserved only fer Skipper, tha pair ripped thar clothes as an act of contrition and rushed in ter tha crowd, shouting: “Friends, why are you doing this? We too are only human, like you. We are bringing you good news, telling you to turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heavens and the earth and the sea and everything in them. In the past, he let all nations go their own way. Yet he has not left himself without testimony: He has shown kindness by giving you rain from heaven and crops in their seasons; he provides you with plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.”
Even after saying all this ter tha crowd, Saul Paul and Barnabas found it difficult ter keep tha rabble from making sacrificing ter ’em. Such ah thing ought ne’er ter happen, not ever.
Fer thar trouble, fer Saul Paul’s efforts ter pray fer healing fer tha man who could not walk, some Jews from Antioch and Iconium showed up and won over tha crowd. After convincing tha mob that Saul Paul whar nothing but ah false teacher and blasphemer, they stoned Paul and then, thinking he be dead, dragged his battered body outside the city.
After the disciples had gathered ’round him, Saul Paul cracked open one eye, winked perhaps, and got up. Then he marched back in ter tha city.
Think on this ah wee little bit: even though Saul Paul did not claim Skipper’s glory fer himself, he still suffered a brutal beating.
Be ya beaten and bruised, battered about tha head and shoulders and left fer dead, ne’er quit preaching tha good spiel and helping folks recover from both physical affliction and spiritual depravity. We might imagine that after Saul Paul trekked back in ter that city tha lame man—who now be tha upright and walking man—give tha apostle a big old hug fer his trouble.
Hugs from others and hugs from tha Son be payment enough fer work done in his name. Only make it yer task ter ne’er allow anyone ter give ya tha glory that belongs ter Skip. Thank ’em, yes, but always point ’em back ter tha Son, fer that be whar tha true glory resides.
Ter tha Son be glory fer ever and ever amen.