A Pregnant Church’s Execution of Evangelism:
The Call – Ephesians 4:11
The Great Commission – Matthew 28:18-20
The Purpose For Evangelism – Ephesians 4:12-16.
Song: Sweet Holy Spirit
There’s a sweet, sweet Spirit in this place,
And I know that it’s the Spirit of the Lord;
There are sweet expressions on each face,
And I know that it’s the presence of the Lord.
Sweet Holy Spirit, Sweet Heavenly Dove,
Stay right here with us, filling us with Your Love.
And for these blessings we lift our hearts in praise;
Without a doubt we’ll know that we have been revived,
When we shall leave this place.
There are blessings you cannot receive
Till you know Him in His fullness and believe;
You’re the one to profit when you say,
“I am going to walk with Jesus all the way.”
If you say He saved you from your sin,
Now you’re weak, you’re bound and cannot enter in,
You can make it right if you will yield,
You’ll enjoy the Holy Spirit that we feel.
Prayer Requests: Salvation and Rest to All who Believes.
Do we need to update our list?
Pastor Garrett and Family Pastor’s Leadership Team
The New Life Family
Michaela Anderson and Gloria Shaw, New Members Amanda Bowers
Lou Mason Lily Murphy Lewis
Deacon William Butler and Family Miriam Renee Helton
Deacon John Kitchen and Family Thomas Likely
George and Bobbie Laws Lonetta Dorsett
Ann Buckner Anne Edwards
Tonya McCall Cora Norwood
Monroe Nickles Etta Spencer
Deacon Robert Jones is home from the hospital, improving and the Jones Family. Toniesha Blythe
Mary Willis Family Minister Sidney, Surgery pending and Jayna Frazier in enduring Chemo and Family
Jennifer Edwards Kenneth Hogan
Vanessa Gaines Kelli Thomas, Virtual New Member
Leon Murray Loniece Smith
Minister Luther Black William Day, Jr., Surgery pending in March
Canesha Curray Hattie M Paige
Africa Horton Deacon George and Connie Shelton
Levi Munlyn Brother Walter and Sis Carole Dunn
Aunt Esther Clements, pending Right of Fellowship Bereaved: The Kitchens and Evans Families; the Butler Family, death of Bro. Greg Butler; Betty Monford in the death of her Children’s Father Family; let’s not forget, The Turner Family, the Graham Family, the Mary Irby Family. They can still feel the void.
SCRIPTURE: “And Jehovah shall be King over all the earth: in that day shall Jehovah be one, and his name one” – ZECHARIAH 14:9.
This is HOMEWORK FOR YOU! Some of you already know it, but it’s a good review. The more you review, the more the fear of teaching it, removes itself.
Look up the Scriptures, please.
Man was made in the Image of God, in that he is a Triune Being (Spirit, Soul and Body); he was created a Spiritual Being, in that, he was HOLY, SINLESS, and MORALLY SOUND. He was capable of being in the very presence of God, walking in the Spirit, Talking with God (Genesis 3:8-19); Sin was made manifest in the Garden when Eve engaged in conversation with the Serpent and disobeyed God. Adam, in order to save his bride, Eve, disobeyed, intentionally (I Timothy 2:14); they lost the Spiritual (Holiness, Sinlessness, and Morality), but retained the body (the body consists of the Mind (thoughts are born), the Will (decisions are made) and the Emotions (love/hate), these he needs to function in a world without God in it). God, not willing that any should perish (II Peter 3:9), saved Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21).
Adam and Eve were put out of Paradise (Heaven and God’s Home, Gen.3:22-24) because Sin Defiles. Because sin is against GOD’s Will, GOD Hates SIN. GOD is completely HOLY, which means that He is entirely set apart from all of Creation. GOD is RIGHTEOUS and JUST. Because GOD hates SIN and GOD is Righteous, Just and Holy, His Nature disallows Himself from coexisting with sin in His presence.
When Adam sinned, he inherited an Evil Nature (Galatians 5:19-21; Colossians 3:5-9). Therefore, everyone born after Adam is born in SIN (inherited from Adam, Psalm 51:3, and is born in the image of Adam, Genesis 5: 1-3 and MUST BE BORN AGAIN. in order to be in the Image of God, John 3:3, 6.
We receive the Image of God when we REPENT (acknowledge that we have Adam’s evil nature); SURRENDER BY FAITH (give our lives to Christ (we take these two without coercion); the moment you take these two steps, the HOLY SPIRIT Regenerates us (Titus 2:5,6; or simply said, He Baptizes us into the Body of Christ, I Corinthians 12:13; He Seals for God, Ephesians 1:13, 14, 30 which is our down payment on our Eternal Salvation; once this is done, God Himself JUSTIFIES (He stamps your record “NOT GUILTY” of Adam’s SIN; not “sins” which we commit after we are saved. These sins must be confessed (called by their name, and a plea for forgiveness made, I John 1:9. He then SANCTIFIES us (Sets us APART from the world (evil) II Timothy 2: 19-26, focus on Verse 21).
And the God of peace himself sanctify you wholly; and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved entire, without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ – I Thessalonians 5: 23.
Church’s Execution of Evangelism
The Call –
Commission – Matthew 28:18-20
The Purpose For
Evangelism – Ephesians 4:12-16.
Requests: Salvation and Rest to All who Believes.
Bereaving Families: The Kitchen Family. Irby Family,
Maedean Turner Family (Sister Turner has lost her Sister since the death of her
daughter, Mary Graham)
need to update our list?
Garrett and Family
Team and New Life Family
William Butler and Family
John Kitchen and Family
and Bobbie Laws
Robert Jones and Family
Sidney and Jayna Frazier and Family
Thomas, Virtual New Member
Curry, preparing for Baptism
George and Connie Shelton
Walter and Sis Carole Dunn
Betty Monford Family, death of their father
Family, death of Bro. Greg Butler
Acts 13, The Period of Triumph
1-7 have described the “Period of Testing,” during which the Kingdom of God
was offered to Israel for the third time. Chapters 8-12 describe the “Period
of Transition” during which the following changes take place:
center of activity moves from Jerusalem to Antioch.
message goes from the Jews to the Samaritans and then to Gentiles.
3. Peter’s activities assume less
importance as Paul becomes leader.
4. The communism of the “kingdom economy” is
replaced by the activity of the Church. The Church had been in existence since
Pentecost, but its meaning and place in God’s Program were now revealed through
Paul’s Ministry of Grace.
5. The Gospel of the Kingdom of God is
replaced with the Gospel of the Grace of God.
If the Ethiopian Eunuch was black (as some
say he was), then in chapters 8-10 you have three remarkable conversions
paralleling the three sons of Noah in Genesis 10:18.
The Ethiopian would have descended from Ham; Paul, a Jew, from
Shem; and Cornelius, a Gentile, from Japheth. Thus we have a picture of
the Gospel going to the whole of humankind.
Acts 13 begins the third and final section of
Period of Triumph”.
Luke clearly stated his purpose at the beginning of the
Gospel of Luke: “Having
carefully investigated everything from the beginning, I also have decided to
write an accurate account for you, most honorable Theophilus, so you can be
certain of the truth of everything you were taught” – Luke 1:3-4 NLT. Luke wanted Theophilus (and other
readers) to be certain of God’s Truth. So he acted as an investigative
journalist. He checked all the facts and closely interviewed eyewitnesses to
prepare a thorough, detailed, and reliable account. Some scholars believe Luke
may have even interviewed Jesus’ Mother Mary.
Things I may or may not
have made clear from the Book as we studied, and some things we may learn later
as we continue this study of the Book of Acts.
is the Only Biblical History of the Church – The book
of Acts is unique. Historically, it picks up where the four Gospels end.
Acts records the fulfillment of Jesus’ Promise of the Holy Spirit, the birth of
the Church on the Day of Pentecost, and the Spread of the Gospel all the way to
Covers about 30 years – The events recorded in Acts cover roughly a
thirty-year period – from just after the Resurrection of Jesus around 30 AD to
the early 60’s. When Acts ends, Paul is under house arrest in Rome. But based
on Scripture and Church tradition, Paul was released, Philemon 22, Philippians 1:19-26, 2:24 and continued his
Evangelistic work for a few more years, I Timothy 1:3;Titus 3:12.
Then, Paul was arrested a second time in the mid-60’s AD, II Timothy 4:6-7 and was beheaded by order of Emperor Nero.
book of Acts Probably was originally one book with Luke – Acts and Luke
were written by the same author, to the same recipient, as two halves of one
work. Most scholars believe they were originally circulated as one book and
intended to be read together. Later, when the Gospels were grouped together,
Luke and Acts was separated.
written by a Gentile – A first-century Christian named Luke is widely
accepted as the Author of the two-volume collection of Luke and Acts. In
addition to the internal evidence, strong external evidence also exists. For
instance, a very early and unwavering Church tradition holds to Luke’s
authorship. Although we have few details about Luke, we do know he was a
traveling companion of the Apostle Paul and probably a Doctor. In one of his
letters, Paul described him as the “beloved physician” – Colossians 1:14. Some scholars believe Luke may have been a Gentile, Colossians 4:11.
was written to Theophilus – Although the book of Acts is for
all Believers of all time, Luke specifically addressed a man named Theophilus –
Luke 1:3, Acts 1:1.
Luke’s use of “most excellent” to describe him – Luke 1:3
suggests that Theophilus was highly respected and perhaps a high-ranking Roman
official. He may have even financially supported Luke’s investigation and
Records Two Resuscitations – Twice Acts reports the exciting
miracle of God resuscitating someone from the dead. In the city of Joppa, Peter
resuscitated Dorcas, a Believer who faithfully served the widows, Acts 9:36-43. In Troas, Paul resuscitated a teenage boy named
Eutychus who fell through an upper window to his death during a long sermon, Acts 20:7-16.
Chapter 13 through chapter 28, the Gospel of the Grace of God was preached to
the Roman world and the Local Churches were established through the Ministry of
Paul and others. Paul becomes the dominant figure and Peter, the Apostle to the
Jews is phased out of the Ministry because the Jews had been set aside.
witness, a new beginning of a New Ministry from a New Spiritual Center – Antioch
read of Paul’s First Missionary Journey and his First Sermon. We hear for the
first time in Acts that wonderful word “Justified” found Acts 13:39 “And by him all that believe are justified
from all things, from which ye could not be justified by the law of
IN STUDYING THIS CHAPTER
To trace the route of Paul and Barnabas on their Missionary
To give special attention to their Evangelistic Methods and
To notice, a) people judge
themselves unworthy of eternal
life, and not God (if anyone misses Heaven, it is the
individual’s decision, not God’s because He has provided THE WAY for all to get
back to Heaven and a way to live a successful Christian life on earth,
representing Heaven); and b) people ordained for eternal life are those
with good and noble hearts, willing to listen and heed the Gospel. When we
studied in Chapter 4, Peter is being challenged about the lame man who was
healed at the Beautiful Gate and in preaching to the Jews, this was made clear:
“8Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto
them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,9If we this day
be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made
whole;10Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel,
that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God
raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.11This
is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head
of the corner.12Neither is there salvation in any other: for there
is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved” –
STUDY SHOWS WHEN FIRST MISSIONARIES WERE CALLED:
In Antioch, Syria: Called by the Spirit – verses
“1Now there were in the church
that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas,
and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen,
which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.2As
they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me
Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.3And
when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them
away” – Acts 13:1-3.
Keep in mind that the Center (Headquarters) of
the Church’s Operations
had moved from Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria where most of the Jews resided
to Antioch and the Gentiles, (this occurred in Acts 11:19-30 when
Barnabas and Saul set up the first Local Church in Antioch and Believers were
called Christians first. Do not confuse Antioch in Syria, Paul’s “home Church”, a Hellenistic
Greek city with
Antioch in Pisidia – Acts 13:14-52.
Note that as the Servants of the Lord Ministered
in this Local Church, God called two of them (the first and last names on the
list in Acts 13:1 – and
soon the last would become first) to a world ministry. It is the servants who
are faithful at home that God uses elsewhere.
in Acts 13:1)
means New Testament Prophets whom Christ appointed in Ephesians 4:11 saying,
He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors
describe the New Testament Program for sending out Missionaries:
those whom He chooses.
certifies this Call.
and the Spirit send the Missionaries forth, backing them with prayer
and support. It is right that Missionaries report to their Churches
– Acts 14:26-28.
It is also not unbiblical for Local Churches
to band together and Organize Agencies for sending out Missionaries.
Everywhere God plant His Seed, Satan plants
THE MISSIONARIES ENCOUNTER SATAN RIGHT AWAY.
IN CYPRUS: OPPOSED BY THE DEVIL – Acts 13:4-12.
they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from
thence they sailed to Cyprus.5And when they were at Salamis, they
preached the word of God in the synagogues of the Jews: and they had also John
to their minister.6And when they had gone through the isle unto
Paphos, they found a certain sorcerer, a false prophet, a Jew, whose name was
Barjesus:7Which was with the deputy of the country, Sergius Paulus,
a prudent man; who called for Barnabas and Saul, and desired to hear the word
of God.8But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by
interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.9Then
Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on
him,10And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child
of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert
the right ways of the Lord?:11And now, behold, the hand of the Lord
is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And
immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking
some to lead him by the hand.12Then the deputy, when he saw what was
done, believed, being astonished at the doctrine of the Lord.”
In the parable of the tares (Matthew 13:24-30
and Matthew 13:36-43) Christ promised that, wherever the true Children
of God were planted, Satan would plant counterfeits. This is what happened at
first stop. Satan came in the person of an apostate Jew, a false prophet, a
child of the devil. God identified him immediately through Saul, (9Then
Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on
him,10And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou child
of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert
the right ways of the Lord? – Acts 13:10). Today,
God may not call the Devil out, but He points him out, so that by Faith, His
Children can recognize him. It is the responsibility of God’s People to call
them out. The Missionaries didn’t have a Bible, so God used their mouths to
Speak His Word. But now, The Bible has been written. We must know God’s Word in
operate God’s Church according to His Will. Jesus stated His Mission
on earth in Luke 4:18, 19 – He said, “The Spirit of the Lord is
upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath
sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and
recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,19To
preach the acceptable year of the Lord.”
authorized His Followers to continue His Mission on earth. When Believers stand
before The Judgment Seat of Christ in Heaven, it is to give account of our Work
while we were in His Body. Believers give account of sins (iniquities)
in the human body. That is why you leave it in the earth for decomposition to
take place. When Christ comes back for His Church, He restores the Compost to
its Spiritual form, which means that it is from that moment forward, Sinless,
Holy, having Moral Standards, this is the perfection for which we
strive; these are they which Adam lost in SIN, and everyone born after Adam and
Eve inherited this sinful nature and therefore, Must be Born Again in order to
receive the Moral Standards of God’s Standards. Adam had been in a perfect
environment, but being tempted by Satan, he sinned.
- Holy – What does It mean to be Holy? Holiness is a
word that can make us feel uneasy. It seems lofty, threatening,
alien to our nature. When applied to mankind, it means to be separated to
God from all that is unclean. When applied to God, it means not only that
He is separated from all that is evil but also, He is completely pure and
distinct from all other beings.
instinctively sense that God’s Holiness has dangerous overtones. His Purity
calls our sinful attachments into question, demanding that we forsake them in
order to enjoy the greatest of all goods – belonging to a God of Infinite Love
and Power. To come casually to Christ with our hearts grasping tightly to the
sins we cherish or to come lightly as though they are no big deal (“oh, but I
just got one vice”; but if that vice offends God, let it go, because “Know
ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in
you?17If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy;
for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are” – I Cor. 3:16,17,
when we don’t heed this warning, it is like throwing ourselves onto a roaring
fire with the expectation we will not perish. How, then, can we – sinful and
broken human beings – hope to come into the presence of a Holy God and survive
the experience? We must Practice Holiness!
Remember Peter, the guy who denied Jesus
three times? The dude who was supposed to have met Jesus in Galilee after the
Resurrection, but instead went fishing in the Ocean butt-naked? – when he was
“Converted from sinner to Saint”, he began and continues until this day, to
tell Believers everywhere: “13Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober,
and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the
revelation of Jesus Christ;14As obedient children, not fashioning
yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance:15But as
he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;16Because
it is written, ‘Be ye holy; for I am holy” – I Peter 1:13-16, see also
What Can Be Holy? Time, space, objects, and people – all
can become Holy if they belong to God. That’s why Peter said, “gird up the
loins of your mind…”
Sinless – We love to say,
“Christianity is a process”, It is TRUE! Because there are three stages of the Christian’s Salvation:
Justification: This is the initial stage of Salvation,
which begins when we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. after Regeneration
(the Baptism of the Holy Ghost into the Body of Christ. In this stage, God
declares the guilty sinner, “Not Guilty” of the sinful nature that was
inherited from Adam.
Sanctification: This is a lifelong process that follows Justification.
It involves the ongoing Work of the Holy Spirit in the life of the Believer,
conforming them to the image of Christ (For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to
the image of his Son … Rom. 8:29)
Glorification: This is the final stage of Salvation,
which occurs when we meet Christ in Heaven.
Paul, who is running this Missionary
Journey is establishing Local Churches so that Believers can gather together
for worship on the First Day of The Week. Paul admonishes Believers: “… let
us lay aside every weight, AND the sin which doth so easily beset
us, AND let us run with patience the race that is set before us.” How
can we do this? We can do it by “Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher
of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,
despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”
What’s happening when we lay aside the sins that so easily beset us? we SIN
LESS AND LESS until we reach PERFECTION ([Not without mistakes] Perfection
is maturity in your Faith in God)! Which we will experience in Heaven. Too many
of us are 82 Years on earth and have not reached Perfection! That means that
there are more people assigned to us to tell “come to Jesus”. “He gave some’…
evangelists, some pastors and teachers;12For the perfecting of the
saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:13Till
we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God,
unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ
– having Moral Principles means we have been given
guidelines that people live by to make
sure they are doing the right thing
. These guidelines
include things like honesty (Martin Luther King, Jr. died, trying to get
people to be truthful about how they treat black/brown folks
picking up garbage and more); to be fair in the treatment of black and
brown people; and to treat all people with equality. We get a
month to deal with the physical, psychological, emotional, etc. of Moral
Principals… but God gives us a life-span: “
days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength
they be fourscore years yet is their strength labor and sorrow; for it is soon
cut off, and we fly away” – Psalm 90:10.
does He give us this life-span?
FOR THE SPIRITUAL aspect of how to live out Moral
Principles. Other examples:
Treating others with kindness, respect,
compassion, and honesty.
Being responsible for your own actions
and keep your word.
Do not harm, steal, lie or cheat others.
Respect the rights, property, and dignity
Help those who are in need, such as children,
elderly, sick and injured.
principles are taught behaviors by parents, teachers, and Pastors, and can be
different for everyone because they depend on how a person was raised, what
convictions have they been taught about Christ, and what is important to them
The Jewish false prophet
Bar-Jesus, who shows up on behalf of Satan. Luke gives a
threefold identification before recording the man’s name: “a certain sorcerer,
a false prophet, a Jew” – v. 6. He opposed the preaching of the Gospel for fear of losing
his influential position with the governor. Paul’s empowered denunciation,
exposing his character and deeds (“10And said, O full of all subtilty and all mischief, thou
child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to
pervert the right ways of the Lord?:11And now, behold, the hand of
the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a
season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went
about seeking some to lead him by the hand”, Vv.
10, 11 defeated the opposition. His announcement of Divine Punishment on
Bar-Jesus was immediately fulfilled in Verse 6. He had hidden the Truth of God’s
light, is now literally blinded.
Paul and Barnabas are on
the island of Cyprus, Acts
13:2–4, speaking to a Roman
proconsul about Jesus in verses 7–8. The government official, in a
search for the True God, has come under the influence of a fraud who promises Spiritual
Light and provides only darkness. Irritated by the magician’s opposition and
filled with the Holy Spirit, Paul declares Bar-Jesus will be blind.
was a significant contributor to Paul’s Conversion. On the road to Damascus for
the purpose of arresting Jewish Jesus-followers, Paul was confronted by Jesus
in a bright light. Jesus told Paul to go into the city and wait for
instruction. When Jesus left, Paul was blind and “they led him by the hand
and brought him into Damascus” – Acts 9:8. Now, the magician that led Sergius Paulus into spiritual
darkness is unable to see light.
blindness was temporary, as well as Bar-Jesus’ “… thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season.” “A time,” also
translated “season,” is from the Greek root word Kairos. It refers to a set
amount of time during which a defined qualification is fulfilled. Paul was
blind for only three days (that was his season). When he heard (hearing
constitutes obedience) the Gospel, he was healed and he began to preach the
Gospel of Jesus Christ, the person he had persecuted. We say we have heard the
Gospel, what are we doing with it? Our authorization was given in Matthew
28:18-20. Although Paul seems to say Bar-Jesus will be physically blind
temporarily, it’s not known if the false prophet opens his Spiritual eyes and
accepts the truth about Jesus.
When Jesus heal any
ailment, it is Eternal. The Church cannot heal, but the Church can bring Souls
to Christ for healing. When you can, get them into the Fold, “Teach them to
observe all that Christ Commanded.”
Spirit of God has anointed you and me. And we are to carry Christ’s Mission to
the end of the Age (Rapture).
The People of God are responsible for keeping
the Devil at bay. How? Know the Word (Jesus is the written Word [Bible]; Jesus
is the Living Word [in you]), He said, “If you love Me, KEEP My Commandments.”
Power of the Spirit, Paul smote the deceiver with blindness. Isn’t this like the nation of
Israel, having rejected Christ, now smitten with blindness? (“For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery,
lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened
to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in” – Romans 11:25). Note,
from this point forward, “Saul”
uses his better-known name “Paul,” which means “Little.”
THE MISSIONARIES ENCOUNTER TROUBLE WITHIN THE RANKS
II. In Perga: Deserted by Mark (Acts 13:13)
“13 Now when Paul and his company
loosed from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia: and John departing from
them returned to Jerusalem.”
Note that it is no longer “Barnabas and Saul” as in
but now, it is “Paul
and his company.” We
are not sure why John Mark left the party, but Paul considered his leaving as an
act of desertion (“But Paul thought not good
to take him with them (John Mark), who departed from them from Pamphylia, and
went not with them to the work” – Acts 15:38). Was it because Paul had become prominent and Mark’s cousin Barnabas was no
longer leader? Was it because of the dangerous situations that lay ahead? Was
the youth homesick? Whatever the reasons, his deed later caused the two Missionaries
to part company, although Paul later did forgive and receive Mark (“Only Luke is with me. Take Mark and bring him with thee: for he is
profitable to me for the ministry” – II Timothy
4:11). How wonderful it is that God gives us
another chance! More than one servant of God has failed in his early ministry,
only to be successful later.
THE FIRST MISSIONARY JOURNEY CONTINUES
In Antioch of Pisidia: Received by the Gentiles – Acts 13:14-52.
when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into
the synagogue on the sabbath day, and sat down.15And after the
reading of the law and the prophets the rulers of the synagogue sent unto them,
saying, Ye men and brethren, if ye have any word of exhortation for the people,
say on.16Then Paul stood up, and beckoning with his hand said, Men
of Israel, and ye that fear God, give audience.
the history of the Jews from Egypt up to the Rejection of the Savior
God of this people of Israel chose our fathers, and exalted the people when
they dwelt as strangers in the land of Egypt, and with an high arm brought he
them out of it.18And about the time of forty years suffered he their
manners in the wilderness.19And when he had destroyed seven nations
in the land of Chanaan, he divided their land to them by lot.20And
after that he gave unto them judges about the space of four hundred and fifty
years, until Samuel the prophet.21And afterward they desired a king:
and God gave unto them Saul the son of Cis, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, by
the space of forty years.22And when he had removed him, he raised up
unto them David to be their king; to whom also he gave testimony, and said, I
have found David the son of Jesse, a man after mine own heart, which shall
fulfil all my will.23Of this man’s seed hath God according to his
promise raised unto Israel a Savior, Jesus:24When John had first
preached before his coming the baptism of repentance to all the people of
Israel.25And as John fulfilled his course, he said, Whom think ye
that I am? I am not he. But, behold, there cometh one after me, whose shoes of
his feet I am not worthy to loose.26Men and brethren, children of
the stock of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth God, to you is the word
of this salvation sent.27 For they that dwell at Jerusalem, and
their rulers, because they knew him not, nor yet the voices of the prophets
which are read every sabbath day, they have fulfilled them in condemning him.28And
though they found no cause of death in him, yet desired they Pilate that he
should be slain.29And when they had fulfilled all that was written
of him, they took him down from the tree, and laid him in a sepulchre.30But
God raised him from the dead:31And he was seen many days of them
which came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are his witnesses unto
the people.32And we declare unto you glad tidings, how that the
promise which was made unto the fathers,33God hath fulfilled the
same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is
also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten
thee.34And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no
more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure
mercies of David.35Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou
shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.36For David, after
he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell on sleep, and was
laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption: 37But he, whom God
raised again, saw no corruption.38Be it known unto you therefore,
men and brethren, that through this man is preached unto you the forgiveness of
sins:39And by him all that believe are justified from all things,
from which ye could not be justified by the law of Moses.40Beware
therefore, lest that come upon you, which is spoken of in the prophets;41Behold,
ye despisers, and wonder, and perish: for I work a work in your days, a work
which ye shall in no wise believe, though a man declare it unto you.42And
when the Jews were gone out of the synagogue, the Gentiles besought that these
words might be preached to them the next sabbath.43Now when the
congregation was broken up, many of the Jews and religious proselytes followed
Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them, persuaded them to continue in the
grace of God.44And the next sabbath day came almost the whole city together
to hear the word of God.45But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they
were filled with envy, and spake against those things which were spoken by
Paul, contradicting and blaspheming.
46Then Paul and Barnabas waxed
bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been
spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of
everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.47For so hath the Lord
commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou
shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth.48And when the
Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord: and as
many as were ordained to eternal life believed.49And the word of the
Lord was published throughout all the region.50But the Jews stirred
up the devout and honorable women, and the chief men of the city, and raised
persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and expelled them out of their coasts.51But
they shook off the dust of their feet against them, and came unto Iconium.52And
the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.
Paul go to the Jewish Synagogue when his Special Commission was to the
Gentiles? For several reasons: 1) he knew he would get a hearing among the Jews
in the Synagogue, and this was the logical place to start; 2) he had a personal
burden for his people (“I say the truth in Christ, I lie not, my conscience
also bearing me witness in the Holy Ghost,2That I have great
heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart.3For I could wish that
myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the
flesh”- Romans 9:1-3 and Romans 10:1); 3) he wanted his nation to hear God’s
Word and so be without excuse. We cannot help but admire Paul’s burden for Israel. [As we should be burdened by our own
families.] His words remind us of Moses in Exodus 32:31-35, “And Moses returned
unto the LORD, and said, Oh, this people have sinned a great sin, and have made
them gods of gold.32Yet now, if thou wilt forgive their sin; and if
not, blot me, I pray thee, out of thy book which thou hast written.33And
the LORD said unto Moses, Whosoever hath sinned against me, him will I blot out
of my book.34Therefore now go, lead the people unto the place of
which I have spoken unto thee: behold, mine Angel shall go before thee:
nevertheless in the day when I visit I will visit their sin upon them.35And
the LORD plagued the people, because they made the calf, which Aaron made.”
This should help us to appreciate GRACE AND MERCY. Do we
have that kind of a burden for lost Souls? Acquaintances? Christ
loved us so much He became a curse for us.
this Sermon, he stated that Christ came “to the Jews first” – Acts 13:23-27 and Acts
13:46, but he was careful to state that Salvation is for “all that believe” – Acts 13:39.
In Acts 13:17-22,
Paul showed how the OT was a preparation period for the coming of Messiah. The
Old Testament Saints had to be taught what sin is, how God expected it to be
dealt with, personally and as a Nation because before the giving of the Law,
every man did what seemed right in his own eyes. The key point was
and is: “when people serve God, they prosper” versus “again and again falling
away from God into the worship of idols.” An idol can be anything that you put
before God, whether you drink it, smoke it, touch it, etc. God says, “come
out from among them and touch not the unclean thing, and I will be a father
unto you, and you will be my sons and daughters.”
The Old Testament Saints’
experiences are our examples and encouragements so we can know what to do or
not to do – I Corinthians 10:11.
What does it say?
(The God of this people of Israel chose our
fathers, and exalted the people when they dwelt as strangers in the land of Egypt,
and with an high arm brought he them out of it.18And about the time
of forty years suffered he their manners in the wilderness.19And
when he had destroyed seven nations in the land of Chanaan, he divided their
land to them by lot.20And after that he gave unto them judges about
the space of four hundred and fifty years, until Samuel the prophet.21And
afterward they desired a king: and God gave unto them Saul the son of Cis, a
man of the tribe of Benjamin, by the space of forty years.22And when
he had removed him, he raised up unto them David to be their king; to whom also
he gave testimony, and said, I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after
mine own heart, which shall fulfil all my will.
Egypt and the wilderness are pictures or
types of the world. The Israelites went down for food and got trapped for 430
years because of slavery until God delivered them. They were trapped in the
wilderness because of their disobedience and lack of trust in God. Only two
people who left Egypt who were twenty years or older made it to the Promised
Things we learn from the wilderness journey:
way to our promised land is not always easy, in fact, it rarely is. But always
will make a way where there doesn’t seem to be a way.
will lead us day and night.
fights on behalf of his people
provides in miraculous ways
will always take us farther than we want to go.
may feel forgotten and left on our own, but God is always with us.
how the OT was a preparation period for the coming of Messiah. Christianity is
a Journey. It lasts for a lifetime. This journey includes a journey through
this man’s seed hath God according to his promise raised unto Israel a Savior,
Jesus:24When John had first preached before his coming the baptism
of repentance to all the people of Israel.25And as John fulfilled
his course, he said, Whom think ye that I am? I am not he. But, behold, there
cometh one after me, whose shoes of his feet I am not worthy to loose.26Men
and brethren, children of the stock of Abraham, and whosoever among you feareth
God, to you is the word of this salvation sent.27 For they that
dwell at Jerusalem, and their rulers, because they knew him not, nor yet the
voices of the prophets which are read every sabbath day, they have fulfilled
them in condemning him.28And though they found no cause of death in
him, yet desired they Pilate that he should be slain.29And when they
had fulfilled all that was written of him, they took him down from the tree,
and laid him in a sepulchre.30But God raised him from the dead:31And
he was seen many days of them which came up with him from Galilee to Jerusalem,
who are his witnesses unto the people.
32And we declare unto you glad
tidings, how that the promise which was made unto the fathers,33God
hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus
again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day
have I begotten thee.34And as concerning that he raised him up from
the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will
give you the sure mercies of David.35Wherefore he saith also in
another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.36For
David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell on
sleep, and was laid unto his fathers, and saw corruption: 37But
he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption.
Acts 13:38-41 give the personal conclusion of the message showing that Salvation
was not through obedience to the law, but through faith in Christ.
it known unto you therefore, men and brethren, that through this man is
preached unto you the forgiveness of sins:39And by him all that
believe are justified from all things, from which ye could not be justified by
the law of Moses.40Beware therefore, lest that come upon you, which
is spoken of in the prophets;41Behold, ye despisers, and wonder, and
perish: for I work a work in your days, a work which ye shall in no wise
believe, though a man declare it unto you.
The warning in Acts 13:40-41 comes
from Habakkuk 1:5. The “work” referred to here is God’s Program of saving
the Gentiles. How unbelievable this must have been to the Jews! When the Prophet
Habakkuk spoke these words, the Gentile ruler Nebuchadnezzar was rising to
power and would be invading nation after nation.
used these words to warn the Jews that, if they did not believe and receive the
Gospel, they would perish like the unbelieving Israel of days past. He preached
the Gospel of the Grace of God (43Now when the congregation was broken up, many of the Jews
and religious proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas: who, speaking to them,
persuaded them to continue in the grace of God – Acts 13:43), the message we are to proclaim today.
What were the results? Some Jews and
Gentile proselytes immediately believed. It is obvious that these
religious people, trained in the Scriptures, would be best prepared to receive
the message. The next week the whole city was gathered together! This meant
that the Gentile Believers had spread the word among their friends, so that the
majority of the congregation that Sabbath Day was Gentile. This provoked the
Jews to jealousy, and they hindered Paul’s Ministry, so he turned from them to a Ministry
among the Gentiles. He explained his action 46Then Paul
and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should
first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge
yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles, Acts 13:46; according to God’s Program outlined in the OT, it was
necessary that the Word go to the Jews first; but now that they had (like their
brethren in Jerusalem) proved themselves unworthy, the message would go to the
Gentiles. Paul quoted Isaiah 49:6,
where God said that Christ was a Light to the Gentiles. See also Luke 2:29-32.
Do not “tone down” the phrase in 48And when
the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of the Lord:
and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed – Acts 13:48 that indicates that certain people were “ordained to eternal life.” The Gk. word actually
means “enrolled,” and has the idea of names written in a book.
is by Grace, through Faith, there is also that mysterious working of God
whereby we are “chosen in Christ” (Ephesians
1:4). We do not know who God’s elect are, so we offer
the Gospel to all and have confidence that the Spirit will Work.
course, where the seed is bearing fruit, Satan comes to oppose; and note that
he can use “religious people” to do the Work. True Christianity does not
persecute anyone, but religious people have persecuted and murdered in the
name of Christ. (For Paul’s comment on persecution see II Tim. 3:11, (“Persecutions, afflictions, which came unto me at Antioch, at Iconium,
at Lystra; what persecutions I endured: but out of them all the Lord
The opposition did not stop Paul
and his associates; filled with joy and the Holy Spirit, they continued to
minister the Word.
FROM ANTIOCH OF SYRIA (1-3)
AND TEACHERS AT ANTIOCH (1)
Simeon (called Niger), Lucius of Cyrene
(who had been brought up with Herod), Saul
AND SAUL SEPARATED AND SENT (2-3)
the prophets and teachers ministered to the Lord and fasted
Holy Spirit commands that Barnabas and Saul be separated for His work
fasting, prayer, and laying on of hands, Barnabas and Saul are sent away
ON THE ISLAND OF CYPRUS (4-12)
TO SALAMIS (4-5)
out by the Holy Spirit, Barnabas and Saul go down to Seleucia
Seleucia they sail to Cyprus and arrive at Salamis
Salamis they preach the Word in the Jewish synagogue, assisted by John Mark
AT PAPHOS (6-12)
the island of Cyprus they arrive at Paphos.
they encounter Elymas Bar-Jesus, a sorcerer and false prophet
proconsul, Sergius Paulus, wanted to hear the Word of God
sought to keep him from hearing Barnabas and Saul
(who is also called Paul from this point forward) confronts and confounds
with the Holy Spirit, Paul looked at him intently and saw that he was full of
deceit and fraud.
him a son of the devil and enemy of Righteousness, Paul charged him with
perverting the ways of the Lord.
then foretells his blindness by the hand of the Lord, which happens immediately,
what happened, Sergius Paulus believes, astonished at the teaching of the Lord.
IN ANTIOCH OF PISIDIA (13-52)
CYPRUS TO ANTIOCH, BY WAY OF PERGA (13-14)
sail from Paphos, they arrive in Perga of Pamphylia
Perga, John Mark leaves them and returns to Jerusalem.
Perga, they come to Antioch of Pisidia.
FIRST SABBATH IN ANTIOCH (14-43)
the synagogue, they are invited to address the people.
Sermon to the men of Israel and those who fear God.
reviews Israel's history from the Exodus to the time of David.
proclaims Jesus as the seed of David who was introduced by John the Baptist
preaches the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus.
offers evidence for the resurrection: eyewitnesses and messianic prophecies
announces forgiveness and justification available through Jesus Christ, not the
warns them not to despise the wonderful work of God.
response and follow up to his sermon.
Gentiles beg that he will preach the same to them on the next Sabbath.
Jews and devout proselytes follow Paul and Barnabas, who persuade them to
continue in the Grace of God
SECOND SABBATH IN ANTIOCH (44-49)
the whole city gathers to hear the Word of God.
Jews become envious and begin contradicting and blaspheming Paul.
and Barnabas boldly rebuke the Jews for rejecting the Word, and turn to the
Gentiles as commanded by the Lord.
Gentiles rejoice, many believe, and the Word of the Lord is spread throughout
AND EXPULSION TO ICONIUM (50-52)
Jews stir up devout and prominent women and chief men to persecute and expel
Paul and Barnabas from their region.
the dust of their feet against them, Paul and Barnabas go to Iconium.
Disciples, meanwhile, are filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.