November 25, Friday: God’s Story (1)
Scripture Reading: Acts 11:19-30
Our tendency is to do what we’ve always done. Call it habit, or a rut, or tradition, or whatever; by itself it is a powerful and problematic motivation. The persecuted Christians who left Jerusalem (see Acts 8:1) took the gospel offshore to Cyprus, to the coastal region north of Galilee (Phoenicia), and to one of the three most populace cities of the entire empire (Antioch; v. 19). These are not Jewish dominated locales as was the place they had fled. Still, “they were speaking the word to no one but Jews” (v. 19). It’s not difficult to understand why. But, the fact that this is all they had ever done was not only insufficient reason to continue in the same way, in this case it was contrary to God’s plan. Our tendencies, if we’re not careful, can put us at odds with God.
Questions to Ponder:
- From where were the men who preached to Hellenists? (v. 20)
- Who are Hellenists? (v. 20)
- What did Barnabas see in Antioch? (v. 23)
- Whom did Barnabas go find and bring to Antioch? (vv. 25-26)