KEY SCRIPTURE: Acts 11:26 “And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.”
In our last study, Apostle Paul was sent to Tarsus to save his life from the Grecians who were planning to kill him. When the work of God was growing at Antioch, Barnabas decided to go for Apostle Paul. Tarsus was Paul’s home where he was a maker of tent.
Acts 18:3 says “And because he was of the same craft, he abodes with them and wrought for by occupation they were tent makers.” What was he doing at Tarsus? Had he gone back into tent making? Could it be that the first instant of the Jewish plot to slay him at Damascus, and the subsequent plans by the Greeks to kill him, had caused him to slow down on his aggressive work in witnessing? He could also have been involved in sharing the Gospel in Tarsus.
The word says, Barnabas went for him. This is more of a subjective state. This suggest he had calmed down on his fervency. Barnabas did not give up or forget him. He went for him. Let us also be sons of consolation who would strengthen and lift up those that are weak. A positive word would change somebody’s life and future forever. Make up your mind to build up than to cast down.
James wrote in his epistle that a fountain cannot give out fresh and salty water simultaneously. It can only give one kind of water. The Lord Jesus was an uplifter of men. He said to the woman caught in the act of adultery neither do I condemn you but go and sin no more.
Acts 11:26 says when Barnabas brought him to Antioch, they stayed there for a year teaching the brethren. I believe Barnabas who led him back would automatically be the leader of the team, yet because of Paul’s encounter with the master and the revelations granted him, he was made the main teacher of the brethren. Barnabas had awakened a giant who might have been sleeping. The impact of Paul and Barnabas’s ministry in Antioch made the brethren to be called Christians. This means to be like Christ.
I believe Apostle Paul’s insight into the new creation realities and the divine life of God available to every Christian spark in them the awareness of the oneness with Jesus and so they began to talk and act like Jesus. I believe miracles and healings were rampant. This is the hallmark of Jesus
I have the Holy Spirit the spirit of comfort and encouragement. I always lift the weak and have a positive word for all under all conditions. I bless and inspire towards fulfilment and success.
Matthew 5:44 “But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you;’
James 3:10 ” Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.”