February 18, 2001

                                             Acts 27


There is a close analogy between the course of a man’s

life through this world from birth to the grave and the

progress of a ship from port to port.


Proverbs 30:19


Some leave little evidence, some as wide a wake as

the Exxon Valdez with  garbage and rubbish that

characterized a man’s life.


At various times in life there may be life threatening

situations, but for sure from start to finish there are

problems in life.


“Man that is born of a woman is of few days and

full of trouble”  Job 14:1


“Yet man is born unto trouble as the sparks fly

upward”  Job 5:7


Too often distracted by episodes in our lives,

passing circumstances, shifting situations, the

immediate needs of the day blind our horizons,

the immediate seems final or at least shuts

out the destination.


It takes a fixed will, purpose, wisdom, skill and

resolution to deal with the hindrances, obstacles,

changes, chances, disturbances & disappointments

of life. Hopefully, there is a pleasant start, cheering

incidents, promises of a prosperous journey but

too often they are succeeded by dull delays,

tedious, distracting experiences

and disheartenings.


We have to deal with events not taken into



We have hope of a straight and speedy course

but often we are thwarted by the folly and

incompetence of ourselves and others.


By and by we think we see improvement,

suddenly things take a turn for the worse, our

boat whether freighted with earthly schemes or

heavenly hopes, is imminently in danger of shipwreck.


Happy is he who at such times lays hold of the promises

of God, cleaves to the Lord Jesus & perseveres unto

the end.


Hebrews 6:18-20    4:15-16


v. 1 - “it was determined that we should sail”


v. 2 - “entering into a ship”   “we launched” 

            “meaning to sail”


v. 3 - “we touched” - liberty, friends, refreshment.


v. 4 - “the winds were contrary” - forced us to run

            north instead of west.


“O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in

himself:  it is not in man that walketh to direct

his steps”  - Jer. 10:23


Jesus was moved with compassion because the

people were as a sheep not having a shepherd.  Mark 6:34


The Bible is truly a road map to guide us.  The Holy Spirit’s

function is to guide us unto all truth.


“Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path”


“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart and lean not unto thine

own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge Him and He

shall direct thy paths.”


“Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and

all these things shall be added unto thee.”


v. 7 - “the wind not suffering us”   “sailed slowly” “many days” 

             - with difficulty, forced to go below Crete.


v. 8 - “hardly passing it” - with difficulty, coasting along,

            sheltered but with no windpower.


            “the fair havens” - utopian, la-la land, only in dreams

            except for Heaven, our rest.


Ex. of Israel going to Canaan - 40 years


v. 9 - “much time was spent”   “sailing was now dangerous”


Ps. 90:9  “We spend our years as a tale that is told”


Only one life, will soon be past, only what’s done for

Christ will last!


Pictures of Voyage of Life as an Illustration - one missing


Self Interpreting Bible - one missing - symbol of our

lives - something missing apart from God.


v. 10 - “this voyage will be with hurt & much damage”

            “also of our lives”  - skinned knees, whiplashes etc.

            but not death.


v. 11 - The centurion believed the master & owner of the

            ship more than Paul.


            World vs. the Spirit


v. 12 - “the haven was not commodious to winter in”


            the world not all that it is cranked up to be.


v. 13 - “When the south winds blew softly, supposing to

            obtain their purpose”


            Good omen.       “Loosing thence”


v. 14 - “But not long after”   “there arose a tempestuous

            wind called Euroclydon”  - typonos - root word of



            Combination of two words referring to the east wind

            and the north wind.


Psalm 107:23-32                    Mark 4:35-41


v. 15 - “caught, could not bear up, we let her drive”


            Hurried along by the wind without will or

            choice of our own.


v. 16 - “had much work to come by”  - safety boat, let

            down but brought back up.


Discovery Channel - ship out in the ocean - no survivors

                                    a mystery, (took a swim, someone

                                    forgot to let down the ladder)


v. 17 - “they used helps”    “fearing they would fall into

            the quicksands”    “strake said”     “were driven”

            “lowered the gear”


Sands of Northern Africa - 24 more hours like this &

they would be there.


v. 18 - “being exceedingly tossed with a tempest”


            “the next day they lightened the ship”


            Started making choices as to what is & what is not



v. 19 - “cast out with our own hands the tackling of the ship”


            Some think it had to do with spar & mast, some

            furniture and bedding.


            Their sacrifices were great but under pressing danger.


The wind blowing, waves coming over the sides, water

filling the ship.  At this moment the relative value of things

undergoes a great change - formerly things thought precious

and acquired at great cost, with much labor of which they

had hopes of making great gain, all of a sudden loses value

in their eyes.


Satan, the accuser of the brethren before God, had it right

when of Job, he remarked to God “Skin for skin, yea, all

that a man hath will he give for his life”  Job 2:4


The value of a soul, a life, my life!


v. 20 - “neither sun nor stars in many days appeared”


            “all hope ...taken away”


Depression, lack of navigational system - God in His

goodness providing the North Star.


Things necessary to comforts ruthlessly destroyed.


v. 21 - Loss of appetite, terror/discomfort/sea sickness/

            danger/labor/difficulty of cooking/unpalateableness

            of food.


Weak from lack of nourishment.


“have gained this harm & loss” - fruit of their own conduct


            Proverbs 1:29-31


v. 22 - Good news - “there shall be no loss of any man’s life”

            “but loss of ship” -   I Corinthians 3:13-15


vs. 23-26 - Paul’s testimony - in prosperity & self-confidence

                       they had rejected Paul’s advice but listen to

                        him at death’s door.


                        Isaiah 26:6-9              Luke 1:45


v. 27 - Fourteen days of being driven up & down Adria


            “deemed” - surmised, guessed, conjectured -

            a bad way to go through life.


v. 29 - “fearing, cast four anchors out, wished for the day”


v. 30 - “under color as though they would have cast out

             anchors out of the foreship” - deception, desert,

             jumping ship.


v. 31


v. 34


v. 35 - “took bread, gave thanks to God in presence of

             them all”


v. 36 - “then were they all of good cheer”


v. 37 - 276 people on board


v. 38 - More choices - “lightened the ship casting the wheat

                                       into the sea”

End of the Road - “saved so as by fire” -


Their lives were more important that the cargo - there is

a time when the things of this world-wealth, or reputation

or the world’s friendship, or certain habits & opinions- are

of supreme importance.   By & by some conjuncture arises

in which you have to choose between them and the salvation

of your soul. There is a struggle at first and an unwillingness

to part with them.  But as the things of God rise in their

immensity before your eyes, it becomes clear that sacrifice

must be made and the choice is made.


But it often happens that the whole sacrifice is not made at

once.  Some lighter loss is sustained at first, and the lightened

soul moves easier on the spiritual way for a while.  But then

some new danger arises.  This time it is the sacrifice of the

man himself, some part as it were of his very being, that has

to be made.  The right hand has to be cut off, the right eye

plucked out if he would enter life.


He well knows that the things that are seen are temporal,

but the things that are not seen are eternal; and so he

cheerfully lays down his life on earth that he may not

make shipwreck of eternity.


The apostle Paul was led to suffer loss upon loss, and to

heap labor upon labor, and to endure affliction upon affliction,

till from being the prisoner of the Lord, he became the faithful

martyr of Jesus Christ and laid down his very life in sure

anticipation of receiving the crown of righteousness at

the  hand of a righteous Judge, when he should plant his foot

triumphant upon the shore of eternal life.


II Tim. 4:6-8


Example of Levi in Luke 5:27-28


v. 40 - Took up anchors and committed themselves to the sea.


            In obedience.


v. 41 - “hinder part was broken with the violence of the waves”


v. 44 - “it came to pass, that they escaped all safe to land”


John 6:39-40              II Cor. 4:14-15           II Tim. 1:12


To come to the end of life’s way and say “He hath done all

things well” - Mark 7:37


Not being astounded - “Why should it be thought a thing

incredible that God should raise the dead?”