Which place are you in?
Acts 18:22 “When he landed at Caesarea, he went up to Jerusalem and greeted the church and then went down to Antioch.”
Luke has become very quiet on the activity of Paul though this would probably have been a journey of over a thousand miles and be a period of up to 1 year. He just mentions the places. Maybe that is all that was needed. Maybe the places alone indicate the importance of what was in Pauls mind or certainly the activity of what was taking place.
Let me illustrate:
“It was a Gethsemane moment” meaning it was a place of decision in my life.
“I knelt down at Calvary” meaning I surrendered to the importance of the cross of Christ.
“It was an upper room experience” meaning it was a time of an outpouring of the Holy Spirit.
Places are sometimes enough to indicate activity or the importance of what is going on in a persons life.
He landed at Caesarea, named to honour and flatter the Caesar, a harbour city of which everyone had to come through to proceed on their journey. Man’s finest hour was all around. Power, praise, man’s success, wealth and prestige. Some people who land here think they have arrived, they have reached the top, there was no place higher. Paul landed but he hadn’t arrived. He had to go up, there was another level.
He went up to Jerusalem and greeted the Church. Throughout the gospels we read of how in order to go to Jerusalem ‘Jesus went up’. But Jerusalem was the place of the death of Jesus and the desertion of the disciples. It was the place of surrender and restoration. Going up to Jerusalem was actually going down to submission. Paul went up but he went down and we are led to believe from previous verses he laid the offering of his cut hair from the Nazirite vow in the temple fire. He went up to lay his life down.
He went down to Antioch where he had first been sent out with Silas almost 3 years ago. A reminder he was a missionary. He had been raised from the Damascus Road to GO. We all need reminding of our purpose, the reason why we are here, what our life should be about. We are sent.
So maybe Luke didn’t need to write about the activity, maybe the place is good enough.
Caesarea, the place of the power of man. Leave it.
Jerusalem, the place of the offering of your life. Surrender it.
Antioch, the place for the purpose of your life. You are sent.