Thursday, May 21, 2020

Thursday - Acts 13 - An Evangelistic Team

AUL and Barnabas were teachers of the true gospel in the church in Antioch, Syria. But God had another assignment for them (Acts 13:2). They were called of God and sent out by their church to preach the gospel elsewhere. These 2 men (along with Mark) preached in Seleucia, Cyprus, Salamis, Paphos (where Paul blinded a sorcerer named Bar-jesus), Perga (where they lost John Mark) and eventually in Antioch in Pisidia. (A different Antioch than the city from which they had been sent. This Antioch was a couple 100 miles to the northwest, in modern day Turkey). This journey is commonly called Paul's first missionary journey. Truly, Antioch of Syria was a mission church itself.  What a blessing that a church on one mission field would send missionaries to other fields. Of course, somewhere in our history, we are all the product of missionary evangelism. And, we should all reproduce ourselves in this same manner: individually and corporately.

Now, Paul's sermon to his fellow Jews in their synagogue in Antioch of Pisidia is strongly reminiscent of the great sermon that Paul had heard Stephen preach on the day of his death. Paul's sermon here was full of Jewish history, Old Testament prophecy, boldness, clarity, condemnation, conviction, hope and the gospel of the resurrected Christ. What a mighty sermon! Oh, how Barnabas must have rejoiced as he listened to his friend (who had once been the primary enemy of the church) preach with such power, liberty and true doctrine! Paul certainly knew what it meant to be forgiven, and so with great passion he preached forgiveness to his brethren (Acts 13:38). 

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