As they ministered to the Lord and fasted, the Holy Spirit said, “Now separate to Me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” 3 Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away.
Acts 13:2-3 (NKJV)
But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you. And you will be my witnesses, telling people about me everywhere—in Jerusalem, throughout Judea, in Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”
Acts 1:8 (NKJV)
Daily Reading Plan
Acts 13:2-3 (NLT) — 2 One day as these men were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Appoint Barnabas and Saul for the special work to which I have called them.”3 So after more fasting and prayer, the men laid their hands on them and sent them on their way.
Acts 1:8 (MSG) — And when the Holy Spirit comes on you, you will be able to be my witnesses in Jerusalem, all over Judea and Samaria, even to the ends of the world.”
Thoughts Of Devotion:
The book of Acts teaches us that as time passed, the church in Jerusalem began throwing and sending disciples out of the city. The commission of discipleship gave its beginnings in Jerusalem, but we see that it extended to foreign countries-in a short period of time! The Lord had given them the power of the Holy Spirit to be witnesses not only in their own city of Jerusalem, but they were to extend to Judea, Samaria and to the ends of the earth. We see Jesus’ mission not only for the local church, but it was important to have the strategy to reach other territories and plant new works.
One of the churches that modeled the launch of disciples was the church of Antioch. This congregation was established some time after the church in Jerusalem and was a very important and strategic missionary base for the advancement of the gospel. This congregation was where Barnabas and Paul were launched to go and open new frontiers for the gospel. It was at this time that Paul began his first missionary journey. It strikes me how the missionary effort took involvement of the church to send them, but the plan was of God. It is important to note how the direction of the Holy Spirit, confirmation of leadership, prayer and fasting took a very important and indispensable role so that they would be commissioned to this task.
What we read this morning should serve as a model and example to us today. God desires to see in our local congregation disciples rise, not only to strengthen local base, but also to be commissioned and sent to the missionary work. Let us pray this morning that in our congregations there is always the atmosphere to reach out of our city. May our hearts throb to be part of the great harvest that awaits us in other parts of the world. Today more than ever it is necessary to send! Pray as Jesus commands us in Matthew 9:38, “Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”
Acts 6:4 (NKJV) — 4 but we will give ourselves continually to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”
Matthew 9:38 (NKJV) —38 Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest.”
Acts 9:15 (NKJV) — 15 But the Lord said to him, “Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.
Acts 14:26 (NKJV) —26 From there they sailed to Antioch, where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work which they had completed.
Ephesians 3:7-8 (NKJV) — 7 of which I became a minister according to the gift of the grace of God given to me by the effective working of His power. 8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ,
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