And when they were escaped, then they knew that the island was called Melita.…
The whole circumstance an apt illustration of the spiritual forces working in the midst of the natural. The shipwrecked company. Paul active in helping. The barbarians better than those who abused Divine blessings like the Jews, who violated Divine order like the Romans; but, though actuated by kindness, easily led away by superstition and ignorant prejudice.
I. THE INSUFFICIENCY OF NATURAL INSTINCTS.
1. Justice easily perverted, because misapplied.
2. The wonders of the material world both misunderstood and misemployed.
3. Reactions, both intellectual and moral, the curse of the world. Irrational depreciation and irrational homage side by side. The world's hero-worship a sad comment on its fickleness and blindness. Ant Dens ant diabolus. We want some true guiding principles which religion alone furnishes.
II. THE STRENGTH WHICH RESTS ON GOD.
1. Calm in danger, because confident of Divine approval and mission. The records of missionary heroism supply many such facts. As much as possible we should cherish the same spirit in common life. True presence of mind the growth of moral strength.
2. He that is full of the Spirit of God will shake off vipers into the fire. The viper of detraction and calumny. The viper of personal animosity. The viper of worldly solicitation. The viper of devouring anxieties and cares. If we are doing God's work, he will preserve us. And the world which at first has misunderstood and injured us will sweep round in its thoughts, and do us honor as God's servants. - R.
Parallel VersesKJV: And when they were escaped, then they knew that the island was called Melita.