And we sailed away from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, and came to them to Troas in five days…
I. THE "FIRST DAY OF THE WEEK" appears to have been the usual period of assembly, and no doubt was selected and consecrated by apostolical authority.
1. It was held —
(1) In honour of the Saviour's resurrection — that event which proved His mission Divine, His mediation effectual, and His combat with death and hell victorious.
(2) Being the day of the Lord's resurrection, it was noted as "the Lord's day," when His people meet for His worship and His truth is expounded, His name chanted, His Spirit poured down, His presence enjoyed, and His death showed forth.
2. The place of meeting in Troas would be an humble one, with no architectural decorations, the private dwelling of some large-hearted disciple, in whose upper chamber the sacred feast was observed.
3. It would appear that at first in Jerusalem, when the disciples kept free table, or "had all things common," every meal was a sacramental feast, or that it was connected with every meal, as it had been with the paschal banquet. Out of this old practice may have sprung its early division into a love feast and a sacrament.
4. The disciples must have rejoiced at their privilege, and eagerly embraced it. What could keep any of them back from enjoying Paul? Alas! that so many in modern times regard so little the first day of the week. And how many stay away for reasons which would never keep them from a scene of secular enjoyment, or ordinary business.
II. PAUL PREACHED.
1. It was the high office to which he had been set apart by Him whom he preached. Moses enacted statutes; Samuel judged; David sang; Elijah battled for God; Solomon embodied his experience in pithy and pointed sentences. The prophets foretold Messiah, but did not preach Him: But the apostle preached.
2. It was his usual mode of address. Wherever he found himself, no matter who composed his audience, he preached. You do not discover him admiring works of art, or mingling with the populace for the sake of amusement. No; he saw man as Christ saw him — a being, guilty and helpless, to whom salvation might be offered, and by whom it should be accepted — saw his soul in its value and destiny, and urged him to accept Christ and His Cross. What else could he do? Necessity was laid upon him. What other substitute for preaching can be devised? Ceremonial will not do; souls may perish amidst genuflections and music. Satire will not suffice. What effect had Juvenal and Martial on their age, or on the world? Paul's was a nobler world. It is no gospel to tell men what they are, without showing them what they might be. If preaching was the presentation of the good news, what else could the apostle do than preach?
3. What better could he do? He might have done many things — might have prelected on Jewish history, Greek philosophy, morality, his own travels, etc. But with such employment never could he have saved a soul, or gathered a Church.
Parallel VersesKJV: And we sailed away from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, and came unto them to Troas in five days; where we abode seven days.