Acts 17:16–21 (ESV)
Paul in Athens
16 Now while Paul was waiting for them at Athens, his spirit was provoked within him as he saw that the city was full of idols. 17 So he reasoned in the synagogue with
the Jews and the devout persons, and in the marketplace every day with those who happened to be there. 18 Some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers also conversed with him. And some said, “What does this babbler wish
to say?” Others said, “He seems to be a preacher of foreign divinities”—because he was preaching Jesus and the resurrection. 19 And they took him and brought him to the Areopagus, saying, “May
we know what this new teaching is that you are presenting? 20 For you bring some strange things to our ears. We wish to know therefore what these things mean.” 21 Now all the Athenians
and the foreigners who lived there would spend their time in nothing except telling or hearing something new.
At Athens, Paul engages the dominant religious and philosophical
teachings of the day. The Gospel message is foolishness to people of this world. Yet, God desires to engage all people with His Word and, by the Spirit’s power, to open their hearts and minds to the good news of Jesus and His resurrection.
I pray: Father, the Gospel of Jesus is the power by which we are saved (1Co 1:18–25). Guide Your people to engage the world with this message. Amen.
Edward A. Engelbrecht, The Lutheran Study Bible
(St. Louis, MO: Concordia Publishing House, 2009), 1872.