“Meanwhile he also hoped that money would be given him by Paul, that he might release him. Therefore, he sent for him more often and conversed with him” (Acts 24:26).
Scott London was making $900,000 per year as vice president of a large corporation. His regular salary was gained through legitimate work over the course of thirty years. Sadly, London decided that he would begin passing private client information to a friend in a different company. This was not only a favour done for a friend; the information was exchanged for $70,000. His gain may seem like a great deal of money for most people. However, in comparison to London’s annual salary, this amount was very small. As a result of his illegal activity, London lost his yearly salary and was sentenced to fourteen months in prison.
Felix, the governor of Palestine, also had a great advantage in his position. According to historians, his connections in the emperor’s court were so powerful that the Jewish leaders were unsuccessful in accusing him of bad administration before Nero. Additionally, he was married to a Jewish woman, giving him some favour with the people he was ruling. However, this was not enough for Felix. He desired to make more money and gain more favour. Ironically, God was about to give Felix the most valuable opportunity of his life. When Paul was sent to him as a prisoner, Felix was able to hear about “faith in Christ” (Acts 24:24). Additionally, Paul presented his faith to Felix so powerfully that it caused him to become afraid. Yet instead of taking the opportunity to begin a relationship with the Creator of the universe, Felix sent Paul away.
Every subsequent meeting with Paul was an attempt to gain a bribe in exchange for the prisoner’s release. He then ended his career as governor by leaving Paul in prison to gain favour from the Jews. The favour and riches of heaven were now out of reach.
Father, show me how much more valuable You are than anything this world can offer.
For Further Study: Acts 24:10–27; Hebrews 11:24–26; Eph. 3:8