“Several days later Felix arrived with his wife Drusilla, who was a Jewess. He sent for Paul and listened to him as he spoke about faith in Christ Jesus. As Paul discoursed on righteousness, self-control and the judgement to come, Felix was afraid and said, ‘That’s enough for now: You may leave. When I find it convenient, I will send for you’” (Acts 24:24-25).
Remember, Felix was the governor and Paul was the prisoner; yet it was Felix who was afraid. Perhaps it was the subject of the discourse which frightened Felix: righteousness, self-control and the judgement to come.
Over in the Gospel of John, Jesus spoke of the coming of the Holy Spirit. “When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt in regard to sin and righteousness and judgement” (John 16:8).
It is easy to come to three conclusions: 1) Paul was filled with the Holy Spirit. 2) Fear is one of evidence of conviction of guilt. 3) The Holy Spirit will convict the world through the speaking and living of His own people.
Here are a few questions. 1) Are the people that we know who are in the world afraid? 2) If the answer is no, is it because we are not speaking of righteousness, self-control, and judgement to come? or 3) Is it because we are not living righteously?
Written November 1983.