Acts 17:24-28 NIVUK
24 ‘The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28 “For in him we live and move and have our being.” As some of your own poets have said, “We are his offspring.”
This weekend saw Jeremy Corbyn talking to the Pyramid Stage to introduce a band and being given the opportunity to talk to the crowd for a while too. Whether or not you agree with his politics, this is a great parallel of our passage today where Paul also addresses a crowd on their home turf and seeking to reach out by speaking in their language. with a fascinating speech by Paul. Paul’s audience aren’t Jews but Gentiles who know very little of the Christian or Jewish story. Because of this Paul doesn’t quote Scripture or assume knowledge of it, but tells God’s story in their language, twice quoting their contemporary writers as he does so. I wonder what films, stories, songs and poems from contemporary culture we could use to talk about God today?
Father, help us to learn from Paul (and of course Jesus!) to find ways to communicate you to those around us in ways they understand.