“Then Agrippa said unto Paul, almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian.” — Acts 26:28
In the story, we find King Agrippa desiring an audience with one of the most powerful messengers in all of the Bible, the Apostle Paul. King Agrippa arrives at the hearing hall with great pomp and circumstance. He was well informed of the scriptures, knew the history of the Jews, and was familiar with the power of God to raise men from the dead. He knew that God had promised that a Messiah would come to be the King of kings and Lord of lords. You would think with all of that knowledge pertaining to God’s word that King Agrippa could be easily persuaded to accept Paul’s message. Agrippa’s response is troubling, “almost persuaded.”
King Agrippa brought Paul to a hearing; Paul took Agrippa to Church. Instead of defending himself, Paul used his time to persuade Agrippa of his lost condition. Paul began with a brief history of what he once was before knowing Christ. He then spoke of his own conversion on the Damascus Road. Some have suggested that Paul was depending upon his own professional skills as an orator as he spoke to Agrippa, but nothing could have been further from the truth. Paul wasn’t acting alone; he hadn’t forgotten what Jesus had taught all of his disciples, “But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost.” — Mark 13:11
As a word of encouragement, people might reject your attempts to defend the cross, but they can never deny your personal testimony. In every message preached, men of God are pleading with the lost in an attempt to persuade them of their great need of Christ. In the early 1870’s, P.P. Bliss was listening to a sermon by Rev. Brundage, a friend of his, in a little church in the east. The preacher closed his appeal with, “He who is almost persuaded is almost saved. But, to be almost saved is to be eternally lost!” These words so impressed Bliss that it led him to write one of his most popular songs, “Almost Persuaded.”
Love and prayers….
Rev. Randy Skeens is pastor of Central United Baptist Church and a member of the Logan Ministerial Association.