16:6-10, "Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of
Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia.
After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit
did not permit them. So passing by Mysia, they came down to Troas. And a vision
appeared to Paul in the night. A man of Macedonia stood and pleaded with him,
saying, "Come over to Macedonia and help us." Now after he had seen
the vision, immediately we sought to go to Macedonia, concluding that the Lord
had called us to preach the gospel to them."
the Apostle and his entourage began this missionary journey strengthening the
churches he once helped establish and watched how the Lord brought the
increase. Now though, passing through Phrygia and Galatia they were forbidden
by the Holy Spirit to preach the Word in Asia and they were not permitted to
head into Bithynia. The Holy Spirit was no doubt leading and directing His
people as He still does today. But what is interesting to me is why would the
Spirit forbid Paul to preach the Word in Asia or go into other areas that he
thought needed the gospel?
only surmise that there was indeed a work by the Spirit being done but perhaps
Paul was not the right person? Perhaps it wasn't the right time or the right
place? So Paul by Holy Spirit knew he was not allowed either by a word of
knowledge or an impression on his heart by the Spirit or perhaps through some
other circumstances. Some bible scholars believe that Paul was struck with some
infirmity that affected his eyesight thus not permitting him to move into the
areas he desired (Gal. 4:13-15).
wonder if Paul felt like, "Where do I go now?" "What I'm I
supposed to do?" Have you ever asked those questions before? I know I
have. Now just as Paul may have been asking those same questions he received a
vision! If you've asked similar questions let me encourage you dear brother or
sister.... remain faithful, be patient, and be sensitive to the leading of the
Spirit because the Lord just might have something else for you to do or
somewhere else for you to go!
Paul was in that place of wondering I believe, and it was then that the Lord
brought him a vision! I
know for myself that I have not had a vision from the Lord like Paul had here
at this time but the Lord has revealed things to me through dreams at various
times. But I must say that that is quite alright with me because of what
23:28 says, "The prophet who has a dream, let him tell a dream; And he who
has My word, let him speak My word faithfully. What is the chaff to the
wheat?" says the LORD." Jeremiah
makes it clear that dreams are as chaff compared to the wheat of the Word of
you are looking for the will of God today... If you need some direction...God
may just give you a vision like Paul but if I had to choose between a vision, a
dream or the Word of God...I'm choosing His Word! Why you say? Because His word
is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path (Psalm 119:105). Because it's
through His word that I get understanding (Psalms 119:104)! Because His Word is enlightening (Psalms 119:130). Because it's through His Word that I am nourished (Matthew 4:4). Because His Word quenches my thirst (Isaiah 55:10-11). Because His Word washes me (Ephesians 5:26-27). Because it's through His Word that I am built up (Acts 20:32). Because His Word is completing and perfecting me (2 Timothy 3:16-17)!