I was having a disagreement with my commander one day over a policy issue. Believing God can change people’s minds, I smiled and said, “Sir—I guess I’ll have to go over your head…and pray about this.” He replied, “Chaplain that is not fa … More
A contingent from Jerusalem, along with Paul and Barnabas, took the good news to Antioch (v. 30). Two of this group, Judas and Silas, are noted as especially being appreciated for their ministry by the saints in Antioch (v. 31). They remained in this dynamic church to minister the Word of God (vv. 32-35). An important doctrinal matter had been settled, and a split in the church had been averted. We do not know what had happened to the Judaizers. Perhaps they had already left, knowing full well that their phony credentials would soon be exposed. Or maybe they were still there, hoping that the strong Judaistic sentiment in the Jerusalem church would prevail. In any case, the letter exposed and discredited them. This doesn’t mean that they changed their minds or gave up their goals. Such men rarely do. But for the time being at least, they were effectively suppressed.
For Paul and Barnabas, the triumph of Jerusalem was soon followed by a disagreement (vv. 36-39). When Paul and Barnabas decided they wanted to return to the churches founded on the first missionary journey, Barnabas wanted to take John Mark with them. Apparently Paul thought the young man had not measured up before, and he probably would do no better a second time. Barnabas was determined to take him and Paul just as determined not to take him (v. 37).
Because a sharp contention developed between these two missionaries, (who had just won a battle together for faith and love for the Gentiles), they decided to part company and go in different directions. Many have asked: did God intend for Paul and Barnabas to split up? My opinion is that this was not His intended will, but in spite of the circumstances He made “even the wrath of man to praise Him” (Psalm 76:10). Paul chose Silas to go with him, and they went north through Syria into Cilicia. Barnabas took John Mark, and they went back to Cyprus. A positive result was that instead of one missionary team, now there were two.
Warren Wiersbe says, “If God had to depend on perfect people to accomplish His work, He would never get anything done.” I need to remember that, even when I fail, God wants to use me.
So when they were sent off, they went down to Antioch, and having gathered the congregation together, they delivered the letter. And when they had read it, they rejoiced because of its encouragement. And Judas and Silas, who were themselves prophets, encouraged and strengthened the brothers with many words. And after they had spent some time, they were sent off in peace by the brothers to those who had sent them. But Paul and Barnabas remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also. And after some days Paul said to Barnabas, "Let us return and visit the brothers in every city where we proclaimed the word of the Lord, and see how they are." Now Barnabas wanted to take with them John called Mark. But Paul thought best not to take with them one who had withdrawn from them in Pamphylia and had not gone with them to the work. And there arose a sharp disagreement, so that they separated from each other. Barnabas took Mark with him and sailed away to Cyprus, but Paul chose Silas and departed, having been commended by the brothers to the grace of the Lord. And he went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.
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Acts 12:1-11Continual Prayer Brings Results
Acts 12:12-17Prayers Answered – Oh We of Little Faith!
Acts 12:18-25God’s Judgment on King Herod (Agrippa I)
Acts 13:1-3Barnabas and Saul Commissioned for Missionary Service
Acts 13:4-12Saul (Paul) Confronts a Sorcerer at Cyprus
Acts 13:13-31Paul and Barnabas Say Farewell to John Mark
Acts 13:32-41Paul Preaches the Gospel Including Christ’s Resurrection
Acts 13:42-52Gentiles Receptive to Paul’s Message – Jews Become Envious
Acts 14:1-7Opposition/Rejection From the Iconium Crowd
Acts 14:8-12Paul and Barnabas Refute People’s Worship
Acts 14:13-20From "God” to "Stoning” – Paul Still Committed to Preach
Acts 14:21-28Paul and Barnabas Share their Ministry with Supporters
Acts 15:1-5Jerusalem Council–Divisions Re: Circumcision
Acts 15:6-11Jerusalem Council–Discussion Re: Moses’ Law
Acts 15:12-18Jerusalem Council–Decisions Based on God’s Word
Acts 15:19-29Jerusalem Council–Decisions for Unity
Acts 15:30-41Paul and Barnabas Disagree About John Mark
Acts 16:1-5Paul & Timothy – New Ministry Duo
Acts 16:6-10Paul – Flexibility in the Itinerary
Acts 16:11-15Lydia–Conversion to Christ and Hospitality Offered
Acts 16:16-34Paul & Silas – Praising God While In Prison
Acts 16:35-40Paul’s Ministry Produces "People” Change
Acts 17:1-9Paul & Silas – Trust God’s Strategy for Ministry
Acts 17:10-15Obstacles that Hinder the Work of the Lord
Acts 17:16-34Religion ... Ridicule ... Results
Acts 18:1-4Paul Adapts to His Audience
Acts 18:5-11Opposition Enhances Ministry Results
Acts 18:12-17Paul’s Roman Citizenship On Trial
Acts 18:18-23God Works His Will in His Servants
Acts 18:24-28Tactfulness–Words That Work Mightily