Paul – a Jew from Tarsus, a province in Cilicia (Acts 23:24) – a Roman.
Saul’s name was first mentioned in Acts 7:58. After his conversion, he first preached in Damascus (Acts 9:19-20). Then at Jerusalem (Acts 9:28-29). Later he was brought to Caesarea and sent out to Tarsus (Acts 9:30). Barnabas departed to seek Saul at Tarsus (Acts 11:25) and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. The disciples were first called Christians at Antioch (Acts 11:26); why? They (Paul and Barnabas) stayed there for a whole year and teaching them in the church.
Later, Paul and Barnabas went down to Seleucia (Acts 13:4) and from there, they sailed to Cyprus (Salamis: one from Seleucia). He was filled with Holy Spirit and he rebuked Elymas, the sorcerer; from disturbing Bar-Jesus (a Jew) and Sergius Paulus, a proconsul (an intelligent man) from listening to the Word (Acts 13:10). From the Island, they sailed to Paphos where they met Elymas and co. then, from Paphos to Perga in Pamphylia (Acts 13:13). After that, they came to Antioch in Pisidia (Acts 13:14). Then, Paul preached in Pisidia (Acts 13:16-41)
PRAYER: Acts 13:17, 19
God gave Israel judges for about 450 years until Samuel, the prophet (Acts 13:20). And afterward, they asked for a king, so God gave them Saul, the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for 40 years (Acts 13:21).
Verse 22: And when He had removed him, He raised up for them David as king, to who also he gave testimony and said, “I have found David (Ps 89:20), the son of Jesse, a man after my own heart who will do all my will (1 Sam 13:14).
Ps 2:7 – God declared Jesus as His son (Acts 13:33). I will give you sure mercies of David(Acts 13:34, Is 55:3).
Acts 13:36 – For David, after he had served his own generation by the will of God, fell asleep, was buried with his fathers and saw corruption.
Acts 13:37 – but He whom God raised up saw no corruption.
Acts 13:45 – when you are envied, it is a pointer that you are getting positive result. When there is opposition, it is speaking to you to move ahead, but when there is none, think about it again.
Acts 13:47 – I have set you as a light to the gentiles that you should be for salvation to the ends of the earth (Isa 49:6).
After Pisidia, they left for Iconium (Acts 13:51). When there was violence from unbelieving Jews, they fled to Lystra and Derbe, cities of Lycaonia (Acts 14:6).
Acts 14:8 – First Miracle by Paul and Barnabas. And in Lystra, certain man without strength in his feet was sitting, a cripple from his mother’s womb, who had never walked.
Acts 14:13-15 – men wanted to give glory to them, but they told them to give it to God (they tore the cloth and cry for the action.)
If you want to make an indelible mark, be ready to get an indelible scar (Acts 14:19). Then, they left for Derbe. After, they returned to Lystra, Iconium and Antioch.
Acts 14:23 – They appointed elders in every church. They passed through Pisidia; they came to Pamphylia, then to Perga; to Attalia. Back to Antioch (Acts 14:26) where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work which they had completed. They stayed a long time with the disciples.
Sent to Jerusalem to the apostles and elders on the question about “no circumcision, you are not saved – custom of Moses.” Paul and Barnabas and certain others passed through Phoenicia and Samaria describing the conversion of the gentiles and they caused great joy to all brethren (Acts 15:3).
After the contention in Jerusalem; Judas (Barsabas) and Silas were sent along with Paul and Barnabas back to Antioch, and also Cyria and Cilicia.
Lesson: Paul that was used by God mightily to accomplish a great thing was one time in the processing of learning; instead of answering the question by himself, he went to elders and apostles.
Paul and Barnabas & Silas stayed at Antioch for sometimes.
M.V.: Acts 15:36 – Then after some days, Paul said to Barnabas, “Let us now go back and visit our brethren in every city where we have preached the word of the Lord, and see how they are doing.”
Verse 37 – Now Barnabas was determined to take with them John called Mark.
Acts 15:36 – 41;
Paul disagreed with Barnabas because John had departed from them in Pamphylia and had not gone with them to the work (Acts 15:38). So Barnabas took Mark John and sailed to Cyprus but Paul chose Silas and departed, being commended by the brethren to the grace of God. And Paul went through Syria and Cilicia, strengthening the churches.
Paul came to Derbe and Lystra – he met a certain disciple named Timothy, the son of a certain Jewish woman who believed but his father was Greek. Timothy went with Paul and Silas, they passed through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the Word in ASIA (Acts 16:6). After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go into Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them (Acts 16:7). Why? May be because Paul and Silas are Romans (Jesus didn’t perform much miracles in His own city). Then to Troas. Then through a vision, he was sent to Macedonia (Acts 16:10)
Therefore, sailing from Troas to Samothrace and in the next day came to Neapolis; and from there to Philippi (foremost city of the part of Macedonia – verse 12). At Philippi, they were jailed because of the man that took their case to the authorities at the market place because the spirit of fortune telling of his Lydia was sent out. They praised God and they were freed.
After the prison experience and the breakthrough, they (Paul and Silas) passed through Amphipolis and Appolonia; they came to Thessalonica where there was a synagogue of the Jews. Because of an uproar in the city, they were sent away to Berea – Jason and some other brethren sent them away (Acts 17:5-9).
These were more fair-minded (those in Berea) than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness (alacrity, eagerness), and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so (1 Tim 15:3).
Don’t be like the Thessalonians (They did not do what they ought to do, and they were also discouraging others). The Jews in Thessalonica went to Berea to cause an uproar again because of the positive effect of Paul’s preaching (Acts 17:13).
Acts 17:14 – The brethren sent away Paul to go to the sea; but both Silas and Timothy remained there.
Verse 15 – He was brought to Athens in Greece and he called for immediate appearance of Silas and Timothy. They called him name – Babbler, (Acts 17:18).
He was taken to Areopagus by certain epicurean (devoted to pleasure) and stoic Philosophers.
Acts 17:23 – 33; Preaching to Athenians
Seek the Lord, in the hope that you might grope for Him and find him (verse 27)
From Athens, he went to Corinth; he met Aquila and Priscilla. They were staying in Rome (Italy), before Claudius commanded them (the Jews) to leave. Aquila was born in Pontus. They were tent makers; Paul was also one. So he stayed with them.
Acts 18:5 – Silas and Timothy stayed behind in Macedonia (Philippi) and they joined him in Corinth. He spent 18 months in Corinth teaching the word of God (verse 11).
Acts 18:8 – Crispus, the ruler of the Synagogue believed on the Lord with all his household
After that, he left for Syria, Aquila and Priscilla followed him (verse 18). Then to Cenchrea – where he had his hair cut off, for he had taken a vow (vs. 18b). Then to Ephesus (Achaia – one of the cities in Ephesus).
The Jews in Ephesus persuaded him to stay; he left because of the coming feast in Jerusalem. He went back through Caesarea, then Antioch (may be Bithynia), then Galatia; followed Phrygia.
You may be led and preach well, you may even know much of the scriptures, be humble to learn from God(Acts 18:24-25; Apollos – a Jew). He was still taught by Aquila and Priscilla.
Athenians – idolaters (Acts 17:16)
Thessalonians (Pantheists – believe in things) – Acts 17:29
Ephesus – was part of Asia (Acts 18:26)
Acts 18:28 – One of the idols they worship in Ephesus was “great goddess Diana”
Alexander – the city clerk of Ephesus – spoke in defense of Gaius and Aristachus (Macedonians); Paul’s travel companions and indeed spoke for God; (Acts 19:35).
Acts 19:21 – He visited Rome, when he left Ephesus the 2nd time and passed through Macedonia and Achaia (in Corinth).
Message: Who Are You?
M.V.: Acts 19:15 Text: Acts 19:11 – 15
Many people are living with past glories. They are acting Christians. The power is no more there the Lord is not asking “who were you?” but “who are you?” In order words, though you have served God in the past but are you still in the household of God?
Samson’s Case (Judges 16:28-30); vs. 28 reads, “_ _ _, strengthen me, I pray, just this once, _ _ _” I believe before he would said that, he would have tried it by himself thinking that the power is still there.
Another reference is also that of the Prodigal Son’s (Luke 15).
Some are not Christians but acting Christians. God chose you to be qualified (Rom 8:30), if you refuse to be qualified, you are going to be replaced by another vessel. What are you doing, saying and singing in secret? Can it be done openly?
If Jesus arrives now, are you sure of being a bride?
After the uproar, he left Macedonia again.
Acts 20:2 & 24
Paul didn’t fail in his ministry because he was an encourager, he never thought of his own but of others. Back to Greece; when he wanted to sail to Syria, he noticed the plot of the Jews and he decided to return through Macedonia (Acts 20:3). Then, he was accompanied back to Asia (vs.4). Those who accompanied him waited for him at Troas because they were going ahead (vs. 5)
Message: Are you waiting for long? Your waiting may be because you have gone ahead God (Acts 20:5).
Vs. 6 – But we sailed away from Philippi after the days of unleavened bread, and in five days joined them at Troas, where we stayed seven days.
Then, they sailed to Assos, though Paul wanted to go on foot (vs. 13), then to Mitylene, then to Chios (vs. 15); Samos (and stayed at Trogyllium), then to Miletus.
From Miletus, he sent for the elders of the church at Ephesus (because he didn’t want to branch, so that he could get to Jerusalem in time due to the day of Pentecost (vs. 17, 16).
Along the way, they passed through Cos, Rhodes, Patara and then Phoenicia. When they had sighted Cyprus, they passed it on the left, sailed to Cyria and landed at Tyre (and finding disciples, they stayed there seven days). They told Paul through the Spirit not to go up to Jerusalem. From Tyre to Ptolemais.
Message: How Can You be a Virgin (Acts 21:9)
You can never be a ‘virgin’ until you are born. Why because virginity depends on sex and until you are born, your sex is not known. So when you are born again, everything about you become new; and you gain everything you have lost back! And then a special favour is bestowed upon you.
A special favour is bestowed on virgins by God. (Acts 21:9, Virgin Mary)
God intervened on Paul’s matter (Acts 21:28-32, 31.
Paul got saved about noon (Acts 22:6; 26:13)
After all the trials in Jerusalem, they sailed to Rome (Italy)
Message: When there is Euroclydon (Acts 27:14)
The prisoners, soldiers and Paul on their way to Rome spent 14 days on the tempestuous sea. (Acts 27:27,33).
When they had escaped, they found themselves on the Island called Malta.
Message: The Efficacy of Prayer (Acts 28:3-6)
From Malta to Syracuse, from there, Rhegium, after one day, the south wind blew, and the next day we came to Puteoli; then to Rome.
Prayers: Acts 16:16 – 18
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