The Indecision of Felix: Acts 24:24-27
“24) But some days later Felix arrived with Drusilla, his wife who was a Jewess, and sent for Paul and heard him speak about faith in Christ Jesus. 25) But as he was discussing righteousness, self-control and the judgment to come, Felix became frightened and said, “Go away for the present, and when I find time I will summon you.” 26) At the same time too, he was hoping that money would be given him by Paul; therefore he also used to send for him quite often and converse with him. 27) But after two years had passed, Felix was succeeded by Porcius Festus, and wishing to do the Jews a favor, Felix left Paul imprisoned.” Acts‬ ‭24‬:‭24‬-‭27‬ ‭
These four verses cover two years in Paul’s life. During this time, Paul was kept in custody in Caesarea while Felix toyed with him. He wanted a bribe from Paul, at the same time he was doing the Jews in Jerusalem a favor. Such is the trap of politics.
Meanwhile, he would often call Paul and converse with him. His wife, Drusilla was a Jewess which gave Felix significant insight into her Jewish heritage. This gave Paul a biblical platform to talk to him about faith in Christ Jesus, the true meaning of righteousness, the importance of self control and the coming judgement. These subjects are at the heart of the gospel.
The Holy Spirit was working in Felix, but there is no indication that he became a believer. At times the conviction became so great he was shaken with fear and would usher Paul out of his presence.
Over the years, I have seen many like him. They shake and tremble with conviction at the foot of the cross, but yet resist the Holy Spirit. Their stubborn self will says “no” to God. They perish without an excuse. God honors free will. He forces no man or woman to believe in Him or obey Him. It is possible to fall short of the grace of God! (See Hebrews 12:15-17)
Felix became an example of a double minded man. He was playing up to both Paul and the Jewish leaders back in Jerusalem at the same time. To please the Sanhedrin, he kept Paul in custody for two years and yet granted him some freedoms.
I admonish you not to be a Felix. Stop playing games with God. You are not in control. There is a coming judgement and you will give an account for your life and actions to God. According to Romans 1-3, you are without excuse. Personal faith in Jesus Christ is the only means of salvation. (Acts 4:12)
Paul and Felix present a stunning contrast of two men. Saul had been a very deceived and violent man persecuted the Way to death. Yet he came to the point of saying “yes” to Jesus Christ and the gospel. The Holy Spirit changed him into a new man. God used Paul to change the course of human history.
By contrast, Felix was a good man who wanted to please everyone. He had a good understanding of the Way, but he said “no” to Jesus Christ. Though he was superior to Paul in status and stature, he slipped into oblivion and has long been forgotten in the journals of history.
Do not tremble in the presence of God with conviction and walk away resisting the Holy Spirit. You can gain the world and forfeit your life. “Behold, now is the day of salvation.” (See 2 Corinthians 6:1-2) Yield to Jesus while He is calling and beckoning you. Do not be caught in the indecision of Felix.
Daily Bible Commentary By Terry Baxter: Cofounder of GoServ Global