June 16th, 2019 ACTS 13:1-12 (GNT)

June 16th, 2019
ACTS 13:1-12
Sustained by God’s Word of Spiritual Renewal

Acts 13:1-12: This chapter begins with the first of Saul’s (later known as Paul) three missionary journeys to spread the Good News to the Gentiles throughout the Mediterranean world. Saul and Barnabas are chosen and sent to Seleucia (on the Mediterranean coast of Syria) and Cyprus. They encounter opposition from the governor’s magician, and the magician is struck blind.
The Holy Spirit said to them, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul, to do the work to which I have called them.”

1In the church at Antioch there were some prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon (called the Black), Lucius (from Cyrene), Manaen (who had been brought up with Governor Herod ), and Saul.2While they were serving the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said to them, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul, to do the work to which I have called them.”

3They fasted and prayed, placed their hands on them, and sent them off.

4Having been sent by the Holy Spirit, Barnabas and Saul went to Seleucia and sailed from there to the island of Cyprus.5When they arrived at Salamis, they preached the word of God in the synagogues. They had John Mark with them to help in the work.

6They went all the way across the island to Paphos, where they met a certain magician named Bar-Jesus, a Jew who claimed to be a prophet.7He was a friend of the governor of the island, Sergius Paulus, who was an intelligent man. The governor called Barnabas and Saul before him because he wanted to hear the word of God.8But they were opposed by the magician Elymas (that is his name in Greek), who tried to turn the governor away from the faith.9Then Saul—also known as Paul—was filled with the Holy Spirit; he looked straight at the magician10and said, “You son of the Devil! You are the enemy of everything that is good. You are full of all kinds of evil tricks, and you always keep trying to turn the Lord's truths into lies!11The Lord's hand will come down on you now; you will be blind and will not see the light of day for a time.”

At once Elymas felt a dark mist cover his eyes, and he walked around trying to find someone to lead him by the hand.12When the governor saw what had happened, he believed; for he was greatly amazed at the teaching about the Lord.

How did Saul and Barnabas and their supporters prepare for this missionary journey (verse 3)? What preparations take place within your community of faith for those who are called to serve the Lord? Why were Saul and Barnabas opposed by the governor’s magician? Are there those today who seek to dissuade people from following the Lord?
Lord God, you continue to set apart those who are called to spread your Word. Help me to be an ambassador for sharing the good news of your love and salvation with those who do not know you, and strengthen me for this task. In your holy name, I pray. Amen.

Acts 13:13-41: Paul preaches the message about God’s salvation.


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