Paul Kept in Custody
22 But Felix,
having a rather accurate knowledge of the Way, put them off, saying, “When Lysias the tribune comes down, I will decide your case.” 23 Then he gave orders to the centurion that he should be kept in custody but have some liberty, and that none of
his friends should be prevented from attending to his needs.
24 After some days Felix came with his wife Drusilla, who was Jewish, and he sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. 25
And as he reasoned about righteousness and self-control and the coming judgment, Felix was alarmed and said, “Go away for the present. When I get an opportunity I will summon you.” 26 At the same time he hoped that money would be given him by Paul.
So he sent for him often and conversed with him. 27 When two years had elapsed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus. And desiring to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul in prison.
It seems that Felix
wanted to keep Paul around, but he kept him in prison. Now this was more like “house arrest” where his friends were able to come and go. Much different than a maximum security prison. He called for Paul often and listened to Paul,
but maybe he was more interested in Paul greasing his palm with some money. Well, Paul spent more than two years and then Porcius Festus became succeeded him and he kept Paul in prison. We know that Porcius became governor around AD 59-60, so this
is a good time marker for when Paul was in prison. The Lutheran Study Bible states: “Although Felix listens as Paul proclaims God’s Word, Felix is most interested in a bribe. So he ignores Paul’s message and leaves him in custody. God’s
Law can hurt our pride; we would rather avoid hearing about our sins and eternal judgment. Though God’s Law and judgment are sharp, His Gospel grants full release. Rather than eternal death, Jesus grants us the riches of eternal life.”
I pray: O Lord, help me to stay focused and to share the good news of the gospel, even when in prison. Help me to make the best use of every situation to share the gospel and help me to not let it beat me