Daily Devotional: Monday 30th Marchby William Moody
25 So Barnabas went to Tarsus to look for Saul, 26 and when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. For a whole year they met with the church and taught a great many people. And in Antioch the disciples were first called Christians.
27 Now in these days prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. 28 And one of them named Agabus stood up and foretold by the Spirit that there would be a great famine over all the world (this took place in the days of Claudius). 29 So the disciples determined, every one according to his ability, to send relief to the brothers1 living in Judea. 30 And they did so, sending it to the elders by the hand of Barnabas and Saul.
Or brothers and sisters
The name Barnabas was really a nickname meaning ‘Son of encouragement’. His true name was actually Joseph (Acts 4 v36). Barnabas’ encouraging nature is further seen here in making a round trip of over 250 miles, to go to Tarsus to fetch Saul and getting him involved in the church at Antioch (v25-26).
How encouraging are you in getting believers more involved in the Lord’s work? We need to pray seriously about this, as the church needs people like Barnabas, spurring others on in their service of the Lord. When we help get others more involved, we have no idea what will be the final result. Could Barnabas ever have imagined that in getting Saul involved, that this man would be used by God to spread the Gospel across large parts of the world and be used in writing a large proportion of the New Testament scriptures?
We see a different side to encouraging and supporting others in how this church in Antioch provided support for the believers at a time of famine (v27-30). We need a generosity of spirit which moves to a generosity in giving to help believers in need. Pray that the Lord will show you how He wants you to be generous with your encouragement, your time and your money?
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