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Monday, December 26, 2016

Inclusion

In Acts 11:19 – 26, we read about one of the first of the churches outside of Jerusalem.  Some of the scattered disciples (scattered because of the persecution with which Saul was involved), traveled north to Antioch.  When they got there, they shared the good news of Jesus.
Inclusion

Many believed.

When that word reach Jerusalem, rather than have them come to Jerusalem to validate their conversion, the apostles sent Barnabus.  This was the first instance of one being sent who was not an apostle.

We read that Barnabus encouraged the believers in Antioch and many were brought to the Lord.  There is no record of Barnabus instituting the same things that were in Jerusalem.  He simply encouraged the believers.

He was not concerned with anything other than their remaining true to the Lord.

What is the lesson for us there?

But that is not all that he did…  More on that tomorrow.

1 comment:

  1. The early Church seemed to have a lot more confidence in the word of truth in the Gospel than I do. Much of my Christian life exhortation was highly valued, encouragement not so much. Barnabas was able to recognize the grace of God in what had happened, presumably the depth of their understanding and likely changes in their lives that reflected their sincerity. Their faith and understanding was surely initial, but Barnabas (likely as the Apostle Paul believed for churches like in Colossae, Laodicea and Hierapolis he had never visited) knew the power of the Gospel in itself through the Spirit to grow these churches where they were planted.

    In the few years of my Christian life I haven't found an over surplus of encouragement in what we tend to do, much more exhortation (also greatly needed). A little encouragement can sometimes do more of value among us.

    I am forever thankful for the men and women who have encouraged me along in my stumbling journey. From them exhortation, also often needed, was more effective

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