Acts 21

Talks for Growing Christians

Paul's Third Missionary Journey Ends and He is Arrested

Acts 21

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Lesson Number 33

Background Notes

Doctrinal Point(s)

  1. Mature believers can make mistakes in determining Godís will.
  2. Mistakes of mature believers cannot cancel out Godís will.

Practical Application

  1. Try to make good decisions.


  1. Where was Paul traveling to in Acts 21?
  2. Where have we seen Philip the Evangelist before?
  3. How was Paul advised about his intended trip to Jerusalem?
  4. What happened when Paul went to the Jerusalem church?
  5. What happened when Paul was in the Temple?
  6. What good result did God bring from Paulís arrest in Jerusalem?


  1. His intent was to get to Jerusalem in time for the feast of Pentecost and to deliver the monetary gifts that he had collected for the needy saints of the Jerusalem church.
  2. This is the Philip who evangelized the Samaritans and also led the Ethiopian eunuch to the Lord in Acts 8.
  3. The disciples in Tyre ìtold Paul through the Spirit not to go up to Jerusalem.î Acts 21:4. Also, in Acts 21:11, Agabus prophesied by the Holy Spirit that Paul would be arrested and bound in Jerusalem.
  4. They told him that his teaching had been misinterpreted as teaching against the Jews, and they compelled him to take a Nazarite type vow.
  5. Some Jews falsely accused Paul of bringing Trophimus, a Gentile, beyond the Court of the Gentiles in the Temple Complex. They slandered him and misinterpreted his teaching, starting a riot.
  6. Paul was able to boldly witness before the Jewish Sanhedrin. And then Paul boldly witnessed to the governing authorities in Caesarea before he was shipped to Rome. There he was imprisoned, during which time he wrote four epistles of the New Testament.


  1. As believers we are given many tools to help us determine Godís will. Discuss the few mentioned: common sense, circumstances, counsel of other believers, and the direct Word of the Lord by the Holy Spirit.
  2. Arenít you thankful that as believers, our mistakes canít cancel out Godís will?! We have all made mistakes in our lives. Share how God has taken some of these mistakes and worked them out for good (Romans 8:28).


  1. You will face many decisions this week both small and great. Seek God's will with each of them and try to make good decisions.

Key Verses

  • “And finding disciples, we stayed there seven days. They told Paul through the Spirit not to go up to Jerusalem.” Acts 21:4
  • “Then Paul answered, "For I am ready not only to be bound, but also to die at Jerusalem for the name of the Lord Jesus."” Acts 21:13

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