WE ARE NOW HALF WAY THROUGH THE BOOK OF ACTS, WHICH SHOWS US JUST HOW YAHUSHA'S FOLLOWERS TOOK HIS GOOD NEWS (THE OFFER OF DELIVERANCE) TO THE WORLD. SO FAR WE'VE SEEN PETER & JAMES etc GIVING OUT THIS ANTIDOTE (FOR THE CORRUPTIBLE SEED OF SIN) TO THE JEWS FIRST, BUT TO THEIR SURPRISE, MOST OF THE JEWS HAVE REJECTED THE BLOOD OF YAHUSHA .... AND SO THROUGH PAUL & BARNABAS (PLUS PETER'S VISION) THE MESSAGE IS BECOMING QUITE CLEAR THAT YAHUSHA OFFERS HIS INCORRUPTUBLE SEED OF ETERNAL LIFE TO THE WHOLE WORLD ... WHICH IS A HUGE DEAL FOR THIS (MAINLY) JEWISH-LED MOVEMENT ...
KNOWING THE CONTEXT OF WHAT'S GOING ON BACK HERE IS SO IMPORTANT, SO TODAY WE HAVE ONE MORE CHAPTER BUILDING UP TO WHAT WILL BE THE BIG IMPORTANT YERUSHALIM COUNCIL (NEXT CHAPTER) WHEN ALL THE FOLLOWERS OF YAHUSHA WILL FINALLY COME TOGETHER AND PUT TO BED THIS WHOLE ISSUE OF WHETHER OR NOT GENTILES ARE ALLOWED DELIVERANCE OR NOT !!
SO ALOT OF WHAT'S GOING ON IS LEADING TO THAT HEATED MOMENT . . .
1Paul and Barnabas went to the city of Iconium, and (as they did in Antioch), they entered the Jewish Synagogue, speaking to the people there. (THEY WENT TO THE JEW FIRST) And they spoke so well that many Jews and Greeks believed what they were saying. 2But some of the Jews did not believe, and murmured things that caused the Gentiles to be angry and turn against those who did believe.
3So INSTEAD OF RUNNING AWAY WHEN THE PRESSURE CAME Paul and Barnabas stayed in Iconium for a long time, and they spoke BOLDLY with CONFIDENCE for YAHUSHA, telling the people about His favour (HIS OFFER OF DELIVERANCE FROM ANY SICKNESS, DISEASE, MENTAL DISORDER, PROBLEM AND DEATH BROUGHT ON BY THE CORRUPTIBLE SEED OF DEATH WITHIN).
THE GIFT OF A NEW HEART & A NEW SPIRIT WITHIN !
And YAHUSHA proved that what they said was true by causing miraculous signs and wonders to be done through them. 4But some of the people in the city still agreed with the Jews who didn’t believe Paul and Barnabas. But others followed YAHUSHA’S way … So the city was divided!(REMEMBER YAHUSHA SAID, “I DIDN’T COME TO BRING PEACE BUT A SWORD THAT DIVIDES AND SEPARATES” ... )
5Some of the Jews there, as well as their Leaders (and even some of the Gentile people too) were determined to hurt Paul and Barnabas, by stoning them to death. 6So when Paul and Barnabas learned about this, they quickly left the city and went to Lystra and Derbe (cities in Lycaonia) ...
... and to the surrounding areas, 7where they spoke the Good News (GAVE THE OFFER) of Deliverance there too.
8In Lystra there was a man who had something wrong with his feet. He'd been born crippled and had never walked in his life. 9He was sitting and listening to Paul speak ...
... and Paul looked straight at him and saw that the man believed YAHUSHA could heal him. 10So he shouted, “STAND UP ON YOUR FEET MATE!” Then the man jumped up and began walking around. 11And when the people saw what Paul did, they shouted in their own Lycaonian language, saying, “LOOK!! LOOK!! OUR DEITIES HAVE COME DOWN TO US IN THE FORM OF HUMANS!”
12And the people began to call Barnabas “ZEUS,” and Paul “HERMES,” because he was the main speaker. 13The temple of Zeus was near the city and the pagan priest of this temple brought some bulls and wreaths of flowers to the city gates, because the people wanted to offer a sacrifice to Paul and Barnabas.
14But when Barnabas and Paul finally understood what the people were doing, they were very upset and tore their clothes and ran in among the people, shouting to them: 15“MEN, WHY ARE YOU DOING THIS? WE’RE NOT YOUR STUPID DEITIES. WE'RE JUST REGULAR PEOPLE LIKE YOU. WE CAME TO OFFER YOU THE GOOD NEWS OF DELIVERANCE THROUGH YAHUSHA'S BLOOD. WE’RE TELLING YOU TO TURN AWAY FROM THESE RIDICULOUS, WORTHLESS IDOLS. TURN TO THE TRUE LIVING MASTER YAHUSHA, THE ONE WHO MADE THE SKY, THE EARTH, THE SEA, AND EVERYTHING IN THEM.
16“Sure, in the past our Father YAHUAH let all the nations do what they wanted. 17But He was always there doing good things that prove He's real, such as giving you rain and a good harvest at the right times. He gives you plenty of food and fills your hearts with joy.” 18But even after saying all this, Paul and Barnabas couldn’t stop the people from offering sacrifices to them.
21where they also offered the Good News in the city, and many people became followers of YAHUSHA there. Then Paul and Barnabas returned to the cities of Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch. 22In those cities they helped YAHUSHA’S followers there grow stronger in their belief and encouraged them to continue trusting Him for everything in their lives, telling them ...
19Then some Jewish Leaders came from Antioch and Iconium and persuaded the people to turn against Paul. So they threw stones at him and dragged him out of the town, thinking they'd killed him. HE HAD ONLY PASSED OUT!20But when the followers of YAHUSHA gathered around him, he got back up and went into the town. Then the next day he and Barnabas left and went to Derbe City ...
24Paul and Barnabas went through the country of Pisidia, then they came to the country of Pamphylia. 25They told people the message of YAHUSHA in the city of Perga, and then they went down to the city of Attalia. 26And from there they sailed away to Antioch in Syria. This is the city where the believers had put them into YAHUSHA’S care and sent them to do this work. Now they had finished it.
27When Paul and Barnabas arrived, they gathered the Fellowship of believers together, and told them everything YAHUSHA had used them to do, saying, “YAHUSHA opened a door for all the nations (GENTILES) to believe!”28And they stayed there a long time with YAHUSHA’S followers.
NOTICE HOW TO THE JEWS, PAUL GOES BACK INTO THEIR HISTORY (TO ABRAHAM, EGYPT, MOSES AND THE KINGS OF THE PROMISED LAND etc) APPEALING TO THEIR HERITAGE, TO MAKE HIS POINT OF WHO YAHUSHA IS ... BUT TO THE NATIONS (WHO WERE UNFAMILIAR WITH YAHUAH'S TORAH), HE USES A DIFFERENT TACTIC, PROVING THROUGH NATURE AND ISSUES RELEVANT TO THEM ie ... RAIN & CROPS etc)THAT YAHUSHA IS TRYING TO GET THEIR ATTENTION ??
LIKEWISE OUR `PACKAGE DEALS' CAN BE TAILORED TO SUIT ALL DIFFERENT WALKS OF LIFE, NOT JUST BOILER-PLATE ANSWERS REPEATED ROBOTICALLY IN EVERY SITUATION ... WE NEED TO LISTEN, UNDERSTAND AND CARE FOR THE PERSON WE'RE INTERACTING WITH, SO THAT THEY NOT ONLY SEE THAT WE HAVE CONFIDENCE IN WHAT WE'RE SAYING (BECAUSE IT'S REAL IN US AND WE TRULY BELIEVE IT), BUT THAT WE ARE GENUINE AND SINCERE IN OUR CARE AND CONCERN WHEN TELLING THEM WHAT YAHUSHA OFFERS :