We pick up the story of the disciples scattering, beyond Judea and Samaria into the “ends of the earth.” As they go, people believe. In some areas just the Jews are converted, but in others Gentiles accept Christ as well. Barnabas is dispatched to Antioch. After spending time there he goes to Tarsus, hooks up with Saul and they partner in Antioch. The church grows, prophets speak and the church at Antioch sends assistance to other churches (Judea).
In Antioch, Greeks become christians (v20)
Barnabas dispatched to Antioch (22)
Barnabas partners with Saul (25, 26)
Church gets legs and reaches out to church in Judea (29,30)
12. v19, 20: They made disciples who made disciples
v21 The Lord’s hand was with them
v23 He saw evidence of the grace of God
Really getting into the heart of this story today is so amazing and so insightful. If you really try to put yourself there, in that time and place, can you imagine how overwhelming and confusing it must have seemed. I sometimes feel lost and totally out of the loop at my church, can you imagine how the Apostles must have felt?
I can almost here them? What’s God doing? Where? Where is that anyway? And who is he doing it with? Is that even OK? Good point, He is God, so it must be OK. But what are we supposed to do? What are they calling us now? Christians? Is that even OK? Who is this guy making predictions? Do we do that?
But, from our place and time we can see the finger of God carefully and simultaneously moving all of these different souls into place for His glory. What an amazing God.
I’ll keep this in mind the next time I’m feeling lost or out of the loop!