Insights on Today's Reading
Acts 13 - Though many believers had already been scattered across the Biblical world preaching the Gospel, Acts 8:4, now the Holy Spirit puts into action the plan of Acts 1:8 by officially calling the elders of the church in Antioch to "separate to Me Barnabas and Saul [Paul] for the work to which I have called them." This was a commissioning of believers to missionary work and ministry. Perhaps both men had already a "yearning to go" but now the Holy Spirit said it was the time to send them. The two men chose John as their assistant, verse 5 and then sailed to Cyprus and ministered there. This was the beginning of Paul's First Missionary Journey. Saul's name was changed to Paul, verse 9. The three men eventually sailed to Asia Minor to the city of Pamphylia where John departed from them, verse 13. Paul and Barnabas would minister to the people in Antioch in Pisidia, a different "Antioch" from where they started. Paul preached an important message giving the history leading up to Jesus' coming. Eventually the Jews rejected what Paul was saying so he boldly stated he would "turn to the Gentiles" verse 46. The Jews would cause more trouble leading Paul and Barnabas to Iconium, verse 52.
Acts 14 - In Iconium, Paul and Barnabas would go to the synagogue to reach out to the Jews, a pattern Paul established in Romans 1:16, "...to the Jew first." Though rejected again by the Jews, the two men would preach the word boldly to anyone. They would go from one city to the next and come to Lystra where they were used of God to heal a lame man, face the attempt to "worship them" verses 12,13, and then sought to stop the people from sacrificing to them. Shortly after this Paul was stoned and it appeared he died, verse 19, but he would be restored and the two men would finish their work and eventually make their way back to Antioch in Syria from where they began.
Daily commentary and insight from Pastor Eckardt.
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Mt Ephraim Baptist Church | 25 S. Black Horse Pike | Mt Ephraim, NJ 08059
Senior Pastor, Stephen A. Eckardt | Email: firstname.lastname@example.org | Phone: 856.981.7288