“And when the seven days were almost ended, the Jews which were of Asia, when they saw him in the temple, stirred up all the people, and laid hands on him,”
Have you ever caught yourself getting carried away in the moment? When I was a boy, my mother would often strongly caution me to calm down. There were times in a game when I got carried away in the moment that a referee called a penalty on me because what happened got the best of me. If I had calmed down and not allowed myself to be carried away in the emotion of the moment, a penalty would not have been called on me, and my team wouldn’t have been hurt by my lack of self-control.
In the verse above, the people whom Paul taught were carried away in the emotion of the moment. There were some who hated Paul and what he taught, and they determined to stir “up all the people” so they could lay hands on him and have him killed. Many of these people who got carried away were probably good people, but they allowed the emotion of the moment to get the best of them. There were many of these people who after their emotions calmed down realized the mistake they made by getting caught up and carried away with their emotions. Several cautions can be learned from this situation that can help you from getting carried away in the emotion of the moment.
First, never allow your emotions to dictate your actions. Many people have found themselves cleaning up a mess that their emotions caused. Emotions cause people to react instead of act. Emotions cloud the judgment which leads to unwise decisions. If you don’t want to get carried away in things that you will later regret, you must never allow your emotions to affect or influence your decisions. The Devil is a master of using our emotions to get us to act. The reason a person yields to temptation is because of emotion. If you don’t want to live the rest of your life apologizing for doing something wrong, you must determine not to allow your emotions to dictate your actions.
Second, never allow the crowd to dictate your opinions. These people got carried away with their emotions because they allowed the crowd to dictate what they thought. The crowd should never be a deciding factor of what you should do. Just because the crowd is doing something doesn’t make it right. In fact, it is often the remnant who make the right decisions. If the crowd always dictates your actions and decisions, you will find yourself being swept away in compromise and sin.
Third, step back from every situation to allow your emotions to calm down. The best way to keep yourself from getting carried away is to step away from the situation so your emotions can calm down and your decision-maker can take over. Have you ever taken a level and shaken it and tried to see if it could give you a good reading on whether something is level? Living off emotions is like having your decision-maker level shaken to the point that you can’t make a right decision. You must allow the bubble of your decision-maker level to calm down before you make a decision.
Fourth, only allow truth and principle to dictate your emotion and actions. Be deliberate with your decisions instead of careless and emotional. If truth and principle are the guides for all your decisions, you will never get carried away in the emotional decisions of destruction.