Tag: Acts 13

Scoffers, beware!

Scripture reading for May 23rd:  Acts 13

Key Scriptures for over-comers:   Acts 13:38-41  “Therefore, my brothers, I want you to know that through Jesus the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you.  Through Him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses.  Take care that  what the prophets have said does not happen to you:  “Look, you scoffers, wonder and perish, for I am going to do something in your days that you would never believe, even if someone told you.”  

Paul and his traveling companions on this first missionary journey went to the synagogue in Pisidian Antioch to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the Jews and God-fearing Gentiles gathered there.  Paul preached the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and traced His  roots back to Moses and the nation of Israel.  He offered forgiveness of sins to them, but warned them not to scoff at the message by repeating the warning the prophet Habakkuk had given.  (Habakkuk 1:5)   Some heeded the warning and listened further and believed and others chose to stir up opposition that soon had the apostle and his company driven from the region!  They shook the dust from their feet upon leaving! (Acts 13:50-51)

Observations for over-comers:  When preaching a clear Gospel message, the response is not up to us!  Some will believe and receive but others will scoff or even try to drive believers away!  Even the dust on your feet testifies against the scoffers!  “Hear O My people and I will warn you–if you would but listen to Me, O Israel!  You shall have no foreign god among you; you shall not bow down to an alien god.”  (Psalm 81:8-9)

 

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Prophets and missionaries!

Scripture reading for May 22nd:  Acts 13

I have been a pastor for many years and know that calling a prayer meeting with fasting was not something that most people liked to do.  Attendance at prayer meetings was usually very low.   Could this be part of the reason for a lack of power and workers in the church?

But the early church met often for prayer and fasting.    As the church at Antioch gathered worship, “the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.”  So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.”    Prophets in the early church would be moved on by the Holy Spirit as the church worshiped.  In this case, a word of knowledge confirmed what the Holy Spirit had already told Barnabas and Saul.  After the word was given, the church continued in prayer and fasting until the leaders felt directed to lay hands on them and send them off.

There is great power when the church gathers for prayer.  Through the various gifts given by the Holy Spirit, the work of God is confirmed and the backing of others in Christ’s body is arranged.   When hands are laid on, anointing of the Holy Spirit is given and identification and confirmation of God’s will through His body brings greater faith and boldness on the part of those sent.  God wants to reach the lost of the world and has told His Church to go!  How beautiful when the Church works together through worship, prophesy, prayer and fasting and the laying on of hands!

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