The events taking place in our passages from the last couple days have had more of an impact on your life than you think. Think about it! Peter receives a vision from heaven in which God declared all sorts of animals clean to eat! Without Acts 10 & 11, followers of Jesus wouldn’t be eating bacon right now. *Sings the Doxology*
Even more importantly, Peter brings the message of the Gospel to the Gentiles. This is big. Peter was THE guy in the Church in Jerusalem. If he brings the message of the Gospel to the Gentile people and tells others that meats formerly ceremonially unclean are now acceptable, then the Church is going to change. That is exactly what happened.
In our reading today, we see, after this monumental change, the church at Jerusalem sends Barnabas to Antioch to see if the Lord was really a part of what took place. Barnabas sees the “evidence of God’s blessing.” What would you think Barnabas would do after seeing that God was opening up an entirely new mission field for the Church? Stay there and preach the Gospel? Set up a church?
Barnabas travels to Tarsus to look for Saul, and then brings him back to Antioch. Barnabas understood that God builds his Church through discipleship. Barnabas brought Paul along with him to do ministry.
This is why our church has such a focus on discipleship. When we read the Bible, we see God blessing followers of Jesus who disciple others with much fruit in their ministry.
Are you discipling or being discipled? This is God’s way to grow his Church.
By: Lucas Taylor — West Campus Pastoral Ministry Apprentice