After we had been there a number of days, a prophet named Agabus came down from Judea. Coming over to us, he took Paul's belt, tied his own hands and feet with it and said, "The Holy Spirit says, 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and will hand him over to the Gentiles.' "
Thoughts for Today:Those of you who know me and read these devotions understand that I love analogies -- I find them to be one of the most effective means of communicating a message. In our passage today, we find the prophet Agabus doing something similar and quite dramatically: He took Paul's belt from him, tied his own hands and feet with it and said, "The Holy Spirit says, 'In this way the Jews of Jerusalem will bind the owner of this belt and will hand him over to the Gentiles.'" Now that's a pretty vivid illustration.
I don't think it was by accident that Agabus chose to use Paul's own belt (after all he could easily have used his own or some other prop). I believe that by doing so the Holy Spirit communicated a much more subtle message -- Paul himself was deciding to, and with full knowledge of what was in store for him -- place himself in bondage, thereby freely and willingly suffering for the name of the Lord Jesus. Paul's belt symbolically represented his own personal choices.
Questions to Ponder:The Bible is full of these types of analogies and subtle messages placed there for each of us to uncover like hidden treasures to discover God's Word for us uniquely every day. Re-read our passage today, and ask yourself what your belt would have symbolized to you had Agabus used it to bind your hands and feet? What free-will choices have you made that have placed you in bondage? Of course the twenty-four dollar question is this: Is it bondage to the Lord or to the world? Take a long hard look at your belt and your choices -- remembering they are your choices. Is there a new choice God is leading you to make today? How can you demonstrate through your choices your bondage to the Lord?