On his third missionary journey, Paul was hurrying to reach Jerusalem for the Day of Pentecost (Acts 20:16; 18:21), perhaps so that he might find many souls in need of the gospel. As he got closer and closer to arriving in the city, his Christian friends tried to dissuade him from going there (21:4). In fact, when the prophet Agabus warned that he would be arrested and given over to the Romans (21:11), all of his friends “pleaded with him not to go” (21:12).
Consider carefully (and personally) Paul’s response to them: “What do you mean by weeping and breaking my heart?” (21:13a). Think about that part first. Then, he continued, “For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus” (21:13b). What kind of person can make statements like that? The kind of person who wrote in a letter not long before this time, “I have been crucified with Christ” (Gal. 2:20).
When you think about potential mistreatment that may come your way for being a Christian, what is your typical response?