August 25, 2019


Passage: Acts 11:19-30, Psalm 67:1-7
Service Type:


  • Tremendous encouragements in this passage
    • We are prone to discouragement
    • We live in a fallen world and have a fallen body
  • The word of God is given for many reasons
    • To train
    • To edify and encourage
    • To save
  • The word of God shows that God is sovereign over all things
    • We are encouraged because the bible is a realistic book
    • We are encouraged when we look at people like Job
    • It talks about doubts and depression
    • It tells us of backsliders and those who walk away from God's will
  • The bible is given to encourage those who love God
    • This passage is full of encouragements
    • Challenges too
    • A great many believe (v21)
      • Consider God's work - information from Patrick Johnson of the 60's, 70's, 80's, 90's, 2000's
  • Overview:
    • Encouragement in Evangelism
    • The Life that Encourages
    • The Teaching that Encourages

Encouragement in Evangelism

  • The death of Stephen must have shaken the church
    • Yet it was God's catalyst for mission
    • It triggered the great diaspora
    • Phoenicia (Lebanon), Cyprus, Antioch (Syria)
  • Preaching only to Jews
    • But the gospel going forth
    • v19 - they preached the words to others
    • v20 - they preached to the Greeks: those who had adopted Greek (not Roman) culture
      • A new thing
      • A watershed moment
      • A bold new step inspired by the Holy Spirit
    • The majority of the disciples spoke only to the Jews
      • Those from Cyprus and Cyrene (an island of North Africa)
  • Antioch
    • The third biggest city of Rome
    • A big city
    • 500'000 lived there (including 75'000 Jews)
  • The message - how would they adapt this to the local situation
    • They simply preached the Lord Jesus
    • They did not turn to new ways of thinking
    • Nameless people
    • Are we prepared to be used?

The Life that Encourages

  • Barnabas - v22 (cf chapter 4 & 9)
    • The Church wanted to verify what was happening
    • Why Barnabas?
      • He was a Cypriot
      • Surely the real reason - a trust worthy servant of God, one who loves the people of God
  • His character
    • Acts 4:36 - he stood out and he was generous
      • Challenge - are we like Barnabas?
      • A man of integrity and truth but of encouragement
    • Acts 9:26
      • One who would come alongside
      • Someone with spiritual perception
    • Challenge:
      • Are we like Barnabas?
      • Are we willing servants?
        • Example
  • v24 - He was a good man - explanation
  • v23 - he saw the grace of God
    • He could see the transforming work of God in their lives - explanation
    • He encouraged them to go on in the Lord

The Teaching that Encourages

  • You have begun in faith, the Holy Spirit and in Christ - continue in faith, the Holy Spirit and in Christ
  • The teaching at Aberystwyth was a great encouragement (Gal 2)
    • Explanation
  • Pray for ministries that edify the Church
  • Barnabas went to get Saul
    • He traveled 100 miles to Tarsus
    • He facilitates and encourages others
    • He brings Saul
    • Saul would learn from his encouragement
  • v24 - a great many people were added to the Lord
    • To edify and encourage
    • To evangelise
      • To be added to the Lord
  • Grace - G.R.A.C.E

Closing Remarks