Monday, March 4, 2013

Paul Starts His Travel to Rome
Review: We have been studying about Paul being in Caesarea. He was taken there with 472 soldiers from Jerusalem where the 40 Jewish men wanted to kill him. He was sent to Caesarea for his safety. Remember that he had to go before The Governor Felix first, then after he was in prison for two years, a new governor was in charge and so he went before Festus. Paul told them that “I appeal to Caesar.” 
While Festus was waiting to send Paul to Rome, King Agrippa and Queen Bernice visited. Paul went before them and was permitted to tell his side and explain that he was innocent. Paul told King Agrippa about how he became a Christian and about Jesus. King Agrippa said, “Almost you have persuaded me to become a Christian.”
Lesson: Today's scripture is Acts 27:1-44. We are in chapter 27 of Acts today, and there are only 28 chapters! Read: Acts 27:1 Luke writes 'we', so that means that Luke is traveling with Paul also. Festus had to agree to send Paul to Rome, since Paul said, "I appeal to Caesar." As a Roman citizen, he had the right to do that. A centurion (a centurion is in charge of 100 soldiers), named Julius was in charge of getting Paul to Rome safely. There were a lot of soldiers and there were other prisoners going to Rome. Festus told Julius that Paul had not broken any laws, but was being tried on Jewish religious reasons, so he treated Paul with courtesy. Paul earned more respect on the voyage.
It was Autumn and the ships sailing directly to Rome had already left port, so they had to take a smaller ship. They were going to sail along the coast of Syria to Asia Minor and change to a bigger ship if they could. Luke and a Christian from Macedonia called Aristarchus (Ar-iss-tar'-chuss) went on the ship with Paul. They stopped in Sidon (side'-un) to pick up cargo and Paul was allowed to leave the ship to visit friends. They soon got back on the ship and because it was late in the season, the winds were strong on the open seas. They had to stay close to shore and dropped anchor often. When they reached the city of Myra (My'-ruh), Julius found a ship from Egypt sailing to Rome with a load of wheat. The captain made room for every one of the 276 guards, prisoners and Julius.
Almost immediately, problems started. There was a strong head wind and remember, they didn't have engines, just the sails. Luke says that they sailed slowly for many days. When they came to a harbor in the island of Crete, Paul begged them to stay there for the winter. He had already been shipwrecked three times and warned Julius there would be trouble if they kept going. But Julius wanted to get to a bigger island, so they kept going. It was Julius' decision since he was the centurion in charge.

The wind shifted to a cyclone or hurricane that happens in that area called Euroclydon and the seas became very rough. They threatened to engulf the ship. They stopped on a little island called Clauda for temporary shelter. They used ropes to tie the ship together to keep it from breaking apart and they stayed in the cliffs.

They left the island, and the storm grew worse. Water sprayed into the boat, and it sprung leaks, so they started throwing stuff overboard to make it lighter. The ship bounced around in the storm for days. They didn’t even bother eating for a long time. Luke says in Acts that they did not see the sun or stars for many days. They really didn't think they would live through the storm!
Paul remembered that God told him he would get to Rome, and he told the frightened seamen that they wouldn’t die in the storm, but only the ship would be lost. After 14 days, they saw land. Paul took bread, said prayer and everyone ate to get strength to swim to shore.
They hit a sandbar, huge waves rolled over the ship and the boat cracked in half!

The soldiers couldn’t swim chained to the prisoners, so Julius said to free them and let them swim.
The ones that couldn’t swim, used pieces of the ship to get to the shore. They all made it to the shore, shivering in the rain. They were tired and bruised but alive! Just like Paul told them! God kept them safe even when things were not going easy. There were people on the island, and that will be the lesson for next week.

They were on the island of Malta and stayed there until winter was over.
I have the bases of the boats glued together and the kids add the dowel rod and the foam sail. If you fold the sail in half, then in half the other way, you have a crease and can see where the center is. I have them poke the dowel rod through the top and bottom at the same time, while it is folded so it is even on the sides. I let them decorate the boat with permanent markers and stickers, no skulls, etc. allowed! It's not a pirate ship! And they put their names on them because they leave them in class for next week's lesson. Next week we make an island for Malta. This would probably be a better boat for a fishing boat for Jesus, etc., but the kids like it.

I like the wood boats, but the foam works just fine, if you don't have a way to get the wood cut. My husband cuts the foam on a saw, but you can use a craft knife. I use Aleene's Tacky Glue to put it together. You do want to use the thicker foam, though, as you can see from the picture. And, we add the hole after the two pieces are glued for the dowel rod, so they are in the correct spot. Click here to print.

You can find all the Acts worksheets here.

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This file contains all the visuals for Acts 27. All are not shown.

Click here to download the pictures to color.
(These are the same as the visuals but are black & white.)

Bible Verse: Philippians 4:4

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.
Used by permission.

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