Monday, March 3, 2008

Eutychus

I have always been fascinated by the story of Eutychus in Acts 20:7-12. Paul is preaching in a third-floor meeting room in Troas. As he continues to speak on past midnight, a young man named Eutychus goes over to sit on the windowsill to try to stay awake. His eyelids lose the battle, and he tumbles out the window to his early demise. Paul hurries down the stairs, throws himself upon the corpse, and then pronounces Eutychus living (L.O.A.?). After Eutychus gets up, they go back upstairs, have something to eat, and Paul continues teaching until dawn.

Why do I love this story? When I was in high school, it was cool for Christians to sign each other's yearbooks with their favorite verses. Most people signed with something normal, like John 3:16 or Philippians 4:13. But I always signed with Acts 20:7-12. To be honest, I did it primarily to maintain my quirky reputation (OK, maybe "quirky" is being generous). Maybe I like the story because of the strange incongruity. A boy named Eutychus (Greek for "Lucky") is so unlucky as to die from falling asleep when Paul couldn't stop talking; but then is so "lucky" to happen to have an apostle handy to raise him from the dead. Paul preaches one of his flock to death; then after healing him, he decides that light refreshments are all that is needed before preaching for another six hours or so.

In the end, I think I am fascinated by this story because it is one of those passages of the Bible that is both profoundly human and eerily divine.

Next post: What does this passage mean? What did Luke hope for us to get from the story?

7 comments:

  1. Hey Gary, I love it! Welcome to the blog-o-sphere! My favorite part is the line "...it is one of those passages of the Bible that is both profoundly human and eerily divine."

    I pray the same for your blog!

    Blessings to you my friend!

    Rich

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  2. I don't think you're just quirky...more along the lines of quirky^2.

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  3. Gary, how did the little boy I knew running around FBC with my son so many years ago become so wise? You must have embraced wisdom as is taught in Proverbs 1:8-9: "Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching. They will be a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck." Welcome to the blogging world, and I look forward to your future blogs!
    Rich's Mom

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  4. Thanks to Rich, Gung Ho and Sandy for your comments on my post! I'm looking forward to my next one. Any suggestions on what to blog are appreciated.

    -Eutychus

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  5. I suggest something along the lines of flaming tennis balls.

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  7. I have a suggestion.

    How about showing the similiarities between the Bible and Star Trek?

    Oh wait, I think someone did that one already. :) Can someone get a transcript from that lesson?

    Maybe you could expand upon the relationship between The Lord of the rings and The Matrix as it applies to the Bible. That could take a few postings.

    K-dub

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