Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Life Of Paul: First Missionary Journey

This is tonight's lesson on Paul. It covers his first missionary Journey.Again this lesson is based on an outline by Mark Copeland at

First Missionary Journey, And Residence In Antioch
(45-49 A.D.)
So far we have looked at Paul's life up until he starts his missonary Journeys
Paul has spent his life preparing for his calling by God
His education, heritage, his Jewish religous stnding and training all have prepared him
Since his conversion his preaching in Damascus, Arabia, and Tarsus have been getting him ready for what God had in mind for him..
Now Paul will begin his series of Journeys that will take the Gospel were it has never been heard Romans 15:20-21
So today we will look at Paul's first missionary Journey Which begins in Syria.

In Acts 11:19-21 we see that the church in Antioch was started by men from Cyprus and Cyrene and when the Christians at Jerusalem heard about this church they sent Barnabas to help strengthen the church. Barnabas brought Paul to Antioch and for a year they met with the church. Here is where the term Christians came into existence. Acts 11:19-26

Those who had been scattered as a result of the persecution that started because of Stephen made their way as far as Phoenicia, Cyprus, and Antioch, speaking the message to no one except Jews. 20 But there were some of them, Cypriot and Cyrenian men, who came to Antioch and began speaking to the Hellenists, proclaiming the good news about the Lord Jesus. 21 The Lord's hand was with them, and a large number who believed turned to the Lord.

This congregation grew and had concern for all Christians. They hear about a famine coming to Jerusalem So Paul and Barnabas go to offer relief Acts 11:27-30 and after they helped there they returned to Antioch bringing with them John Mark. Acts 12:25

27 In those days some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and predicted by the Spirit that there would be a severe famine throughout the Roman world. This took place during the time of Claudius 29 So each of the disciples, according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brothers who lived in Judea. 30 This they did, sending it to the elders by means of Barnabas and Saul.

Back in Antioch while the Prophets and teachers are worshipping the Holy Spirit sets Barnabas and Paul apart for special service. Acts 13:1-3
1 In the local church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon who was called Niger, Lucius the Cyrenian, Manaen, a close friend of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.
2 As they were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, "Set apart for Me Barnabas and Saul for the work that I have called them to." 3 Then, after they had fasted, prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them off.
They head to the town of Seleucia and catch a ship to Cyprus and then go to the capital city of Salamis from there they head across the Island preaching. Acts 13:4-6
4 Being sent out by the Holy Spirit, they came down to Seleucia, and from there they sailed to Cyprus. 5 Arriving in Salamis, they proclaimed God's message in the Jewish synagogues. They also had John as their assistant. 6 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came across a sorcerer, a Jewish false prophet named Bar-Jesus. (Which means son of Joshua?)
It's interesting to note that the gospel had already been sent to Cyprus Ac 11:19 and it was men from Cyprus that started the church at Antioch and now God is sending Paul and Barnabas [who is from Cyprus Ac 4:36]to Cyprus to preach. Acts 11:20

At Paphos they discover a false prophet named Elymas Bar-Jesus and he is with the governor Sergius Paulus. The governor wants to hear the gospel, but as Paul is trying to teach, Elymas is trying to turn Sergius away from believing. Paul stops talking, looks at Elymas, and says“You son of the devil, you enemy of all righteousness, full of all deceit and villainy, will you not stop making crooked the straight paths of the Lord?” Then Paul tells him he will be blind for awhile and God blinds him with a mist of Darkness. The governor believed. Acts 13:6-12

6 When they had gone through the whole island as far as Paphos, they came across a sorcerer, a Jewish false prophet named Bar-Jesus. 7 He was with the proconsul, Sergius Paulus, an intelligent man. This man summoned Barnabas and Saul and desired to hear God's message. 8 But Elymas, the sorcerer, which is how his name is translated, opposed them and tried to turn the proconsul away from the faith.
9 Then Saul—also called Paul—filled with the Holy Spirit, stared straight at the sorcerer 10 and said, "You son of the Devil, full of all deceit and all fraud, enemy of all righteousness! Won't you ever stop perverting the straight paths of the Lord? 11 Now, look! The Lord's hand is against you: you are going to be blind, and will not see the sun for a time." Suddenly a mist and darkness fell on him, and he went around seeking someone to lead him by the hand.
12 Then the proconsul, seeing what happened, believed and was astonished at the teaching about the Lord.

Next Paul and Barnabas head to

Paul arrives at Perga in Pamphylia, Barnabas is with him but John Mark heads back to Jerusalem. Ac 13:13 John Mark's departure later became a sore spot between Barnabas and Paul Ac 15:36-40

13 Paul and his companions set sail from Paphos and came to Perga in Pamphylia. John, however, left them and went back to Jerusalem.

Next they arrive in Pisdia at Antioch (not to be confused with Antioch of Syria) and we have a sermon by Paul. Acts 13:14-41
14 They continued their journey from Perga and reached Antioch in Pisidia. On the Sabbath day they went into the synagogue and sat down. 15 After the reading of the Law and the Prophets, the leaders of the synagogue sent [word] to them, saying, "Brothers, if you have any message of encouragement for the people, you can speak."
16 Then standing up, Paul motioned with his hand and spoke: "Men of Israel, and you who fear God, listen! 17 The God of this people Israel chose our forefathers, exalted the people during their stay in the land of Egypt, and led them out of it with a mighty arm. 18 And for about 40 years He put up with them in the desert; 19 then after destroying seven nations in the land of Canaan, He gave their land to them as an inheritance. 20 This all took about 450 years. After this, He gave them judges until Samuel the prophet. 21 Then they asked for a king, so God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for 40 years. 22 After removing him, He raised up David as their king, of whom He testified: ' I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My heart, who will carry out all My will.'
23 "From this man's descendants, according to the promise, God brought the Savior, Jesus, to Israel. 24 Before He came to public attention, John had previously proclaimed a baptism of repentance to all the people of Israel. 25 Then as John was completing his life work, he said, 'Who do you think I am? I am not the One. But look! Someone is coming after me, and I am not worthy to untie the sandals on His feet. '
26 "Brothers, sons of Abraham's race, and those among you who fear God, the message of this salvation has been sent to us. 27 For the residents of Jerusalem and their rulers, since they did not recognize Him or the voices of the prophets that are read every Sabbath, have fulfilled their words by condemning Him. 28 Though they found no grounds for the death penalty, they asked Pilate to have Him killed. 29 When they had fulfilled all that had been written about Him, they took Him down from the tree and put Him in a tomb. 30 But God raised Him from the dead, 31 and He appeared for many days to those who came up with Him from Galilee to Jerusalem, who are now His witnesses to the people. 32 And we ourselves proclaim to you the good news of the promise that was made to our forefathers. 33 God has fulfilled this to us their children by raising up Jesus, as it is written in the second Psalm:
You are My Son;
today I have become Your Father.
34 Since He raised Him from the dead, never to return to decay, He has spoken in this way, I will grant you the faithful covenant blessings made to David. 35 Therefore He also says in another passage, You will not allow Your Holy One to see decay. 36 For David, after serving his own generation in God's plan, fell asleep, was buried with his fathers, and decayed. 37 But the One whom God raised up did not decay. 38 Therefore, let it be known to you, brothers, that through this man forgiveness of sins is being proclaimed to you, 39 and everyone who believes in Him is justified from everything, which you could not be justified from through the law of Moses. 40 So beware that what is said in the prophets does not happen to you:
41 Look, you scoffers,
marvel and vanish away,
because I am doing a work in your days,
a work that you will never believe,
even if someone were to explain it to you. "

Now That is the Gospel;
1. God promises Israel a Savior
2. Israel Condemned Jesus in whom no Guilt was found.
3.Jesus Rose from the dead
4. And through Him salvation is offered

And when the Gospel is preached the people want to hear more.
Acts 13:42-44

42 As they were leaving, they begged that these matters be presented to them the following Sabbath. 43 After the synagogue had been dismissed, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas, who were speaking with them and persuading them to continue in the grace of God.
44 The following Sabbath almost the whole town assembled to hear the message of the Lord.

But the Jews who rejected Jesus where jealous so they try to contradict Paul. Paul tells them that since they judged themselves unworthy of eternal life he would go and preach to the Gentiles. Acts 13:45-49

45 But when the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and began to oppose what Paul was saying by insulting him.
46 Then Paul and Barnabas boldly said: "It was necessary that God's message be spoken to you first. But since you reject it, and consider yourselves unworthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles! 47 For this is what the Lord has commanded us:
I have appointed you as a light for the Gentiles,
to bring salvation to the ends of the earth. "
48 When the Gentiles heard this, they rejoiced and glorified the message of the Lord, and all who had been appointed to eternal life believed. 49 So the message of the Lord spread through the whole region.

This spreading of the word made the Jews mad so they persecuted Paul and he leaves and heads to Iconium Acts 13:50-52

50 But the Jews incited the religious women of high standing and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas and expelled them from their district. 51 But shaking the dust off their feet against them, they proceeded to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit.

At Iconium Paul and Barnabas again go to the synagogue and began preaching. The unbelieving Jews stir up the Gentiles, despite this setback Paul and Barnabas stay for "a long time " preaching to a divided city until the unbelievers decided to stone them and they left and headed to Lyconia to preach. Acts 14:1-7

1 The same thing happened in Iconium; they entered the Jewish synagogue and spoke in such a way that a great number of both Jews and Greeks believed. 2 But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up and poisoned the minds of the Gentiles against the brothers. 3 So they stayed there for some time and spoke boldly, in reliance on the Lord, who testified to the message of His grace by granting that signs and wonders be performed through them. 4 But the people of the city were divided, some siding with the Jews and some with the apostles. 5 When an attempt was made by both the Gentiles and Jews, with their rulers, to assault and stone them, 6 they found out about it and fled to the Lycaonian towns called Lystra and Derbe, and to the surrounding countryside. 7 And there they kept evangelizing

When Paul and Barnabas get to Lystra they start preaching as Paul preaches he notices a crippled man seated and listening to him . Seeing that the man had faith, Paul told him to stand and the man stood and started walking. Well you can imagine the effect this had on the crowd listening they were amazed. Unfortunatly these people worshipped false Gods and they decided that Paul was the god Hermes and Barnabas was Zeus. Paul upset that these men were trying to worship and offer sacrifices to him ran away preaching the whole time he is running. Acts 14:8-18

8 In Lystra a man without strength in his feet, lame from birth, and who had never walked, sat 9 and heard Paul speaking. After observing him closely and seeing that he had faith to be healed, 10 [Paul] said in a loud voice, "Stand up straight on your feet!" And he jumped up and started to walk around.
11 When the crowds saw what Paul had done, they raised their voices, saying in the Lycaonian language, "The gods have come down to us in the form of men!" 12 And they started to call Barnabas, Zeus, and Paul, Hermes, because he was the main speaker. 13 Then the priest of Zeus, whose temple was just outside the town, brought oxen and garlands to the gates. He, with the crowds, intended to offer sacrifice.
14 The apostles Barnabas and Paul tore their robes when they heard this and rushed into the crowd, shouting: 15 "Men! Why are you doing these things? We are men also, with the same nature as you, and we are proclaiming good news to you, that you should turn from these worthless things to the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and everything in them . 16 In past generations He allowed all the nations to go their own way, 17 although He did not leave Himself without a witness, since He did good: giving you rain from heaven and fruitful seasons, and satisfying your hearts with food and happiness." 18 Even though they said these things, they barely stopped the crowds from sacrificing to them.

Remember the angry Jews and unbelievers at Antioch and Iconium. well they tracked Paul down and convinced the crowds to stone him and leave him outside the city dead. Acts 14:19

19 Then some Jews came from Antioch and Iconium, and when they had won over the crowds and stoned Paul, they dragged him out of the city, thinking he was dead.
He wasn't! Acts 14:20

After the disciples surrounded him, he got up and went into the town. The next day he left with Barnabas for Derbe.

So they go to Derbe and guess what they do? They preach! Then Paul goes back to the city were he was stoned to strengthen and encourage the believers and appoint elders for the church. Then he goes back to Iconium, where the Jews that wanted him stoned where, to do the same thing. Paul and Barnabas retrace their steps to make sure the churches were all still going strong. Acts 14:21-25

21 After they had evangelized that town and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, to Iconium, and to Antioch, 22 strengthening the hearts of the disciples by encouraging them to continue in the faith, and by telling them, "It is necessary to pass through many troubles on our way into the kingdom of God."
23 When they had appointed elders in every church and prayed with fasting, they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed. 24 Then they passed through Pisidia and came to Pamphylia. 25 After they spoke the message in Perga, they went down to Attalia.

When they returned to Antioch, where they had started, they gathered the church together to tell of what had happened while they had been gone for the last two years (45-47 A.D.) Acts 14:26-27

26 From there they sailed back to Antioch where they had been entrusted to the grace of God for the work they had completed. 27 After they arrived and gathered the church together, they reported everything God had done with them, and that He had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles.

28 And they spent a considerable time with the disciples. best guess being two years Acts 14:28

Now we see how Paul went from town to town
Establishing Churches

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