BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 6, Day 4: Acts 13:14b-41

Summary of passage:  Barnabas and Saul are in Pisidian Antioch (Turkey, yesterday’s map HERE) at the synogogue. Paul is invited to speak.  He tells the people God has prospered them in Egypt, led them out of Egypt and gave them Canaan to live on, and sent them judges.  He sent King Saul and King David.  From David God sent Jesus who preached repentance and baptism.

The prophecies of the Old Testament were fulfilled:  no one recognized Jesus as the Savior, the executed him with no evidence of a crime, and God raised him from the dead and traveled amongst them for many days.  God has fulfilled His promise to His people through Jesus.

Through Jesus we (the people) are forgiven and justified.  And be warned if you do not accept Jesus, you shall perish as the prophets have predicted.

Questions:

9a)  First division:  16-25  Second division:  26-37  Third division:  38-41

b)  God chose men of Israel and the Gentiles who worshipped God.  He prospered His people in Egypt and led them out of that country.  He cared for them for 40 years in the desert and overthrew 7 nations in Canaan so He could establish His people there.  He gave them judges and when the people asked for a king God gave them Saul and then David. (verses 17-22)

God endured their conduct while in the desert (verse 18). The people asked for a king (verse 21).

God chose David so Jesus could come from his line.  John the Baptist tried to prepare the people for Jesus by preaching repentance and baptism. (verse 23-4)

10)  Personal Question.  My answer:  By giving me a Christian mom who took me to church.  Giving me a Christian husband.  Leading me to my church where I was baptized as a young adult.  Leading me to BSF and other bible studies where I can learn and grow in God’s word so I can teach others and raise my children knowing and seeking Him.

11)  The prophecies were fulfilled to the letter with Jesus’ coming.  No one recognized Jesus as the Savior.  He was unjustly condemned and sentenced to death.  He was risen from the tomb once killed and continued to abide here on Earth and seen by many as witnesses.  Jesus fulfilled God’s promises.

12a)  Forgiveness of our sins (verse 38) through Jesus Christ our Savior.  Everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses (basically saying OT is nulled and void and now NT–Jesus–rids us of the OT ways and ushers in new ways).  Verse 39

b)  Believing in Jesus (verse 39)

c)  According to Webster’s believe means “to have a firm religious faith; to accept trustfully and on faith; to have a firm conviction as to the reality or goodness of something.”

In this instance, if you accept Jesus as your Savior, trust He is real and everlasting, hold a firm conviction of His reality, and hold faithfully to this knowledge in your heart, then you believe in Him.

d)  If we wonder about Jesus, if we are complacent and do not believe, we will perish.  For Jesus is coming (the something God will do we won’t believe).  Paul is quoting from the Old Testament here (Habakkuk 1:5) before Jesus has come.

e)  According to Webster’s Dictionary, to scoff is “to show contempt by derisive acts or language; to treat with derision; mock”.  People mock Christians, saying their beliefs are antiquated and question whether there is a God or not who would allow such horrible doings on this planet.

In my limited worldly experience of human behavior, I would say a lot of these people who scoff are masking a jealously or a fear.  They are jealous of those who profess faith or are afraid of what turning their heart over to Jesus would mean for them.  They might have to give something up or quit doing something in their lifestyle–a vice if you will.

Paul calls all these people out with dire consequences.

Conclusions:  I think Question 12 nailed it.  I think many today are “dreamers” and do more thinking than they do acting.  If we wait too long to accept Jesus, we might miss the boat and die, ending up on the wrong boat for eternity.  In this generation there is a tendency to “play it safe” and not take risks, a tendency to sit on the sidelines and let someone else make all the decisions.

Here Paul warns if that is you, you will perish.  Period.  End of story.  Too late.

So decide and make it quick.  For one day you might not wake up.

End Tip:  I must have changed my divisions 10 times while doing this lesson.  So I decided to skip that question and answer the rest and fill in the divisions based off of BSF’s questions.  So these are my guesses based off of what I believe BSF is looking for.

End Note on Justification:  I believe this is the first time the thought and idea of justification is expressed since Jesus’ death.  We talked about this last year in Isaiah but I needed to look it up again so I thought I’d review it here.  Most of this is summarized from my Bible Dictionary (Zondervan Illustrated Bible Dictionary by J D Douglas and Merrill C Tenney) found under justification.

When Jesus died, he absolved all of man from sin.  If man believes in Jesus through faith then man is declared righteous in God’s eyes.  Being righteous means we have a right relationship with God (basically we can once again stand in His presence because sin had always separated us from the perfectness of God.  Here sin is washed away, we are righteous, we are right in God’s eyes, so we can be with Him again).

Paul’s last words are trying to convey the key point:  if you don’t have faith, you won’t be justified nor saved and you will perish.  One must have faith to have justification.  The sinner (us) must accept the work of Christ and his death on the cross.

BSF Study Questions Acts Lesson 6, Day 3: Acts 13:1-14a

Summary of passage:  Barnabas, Simeon, Lucius, Manaen, and Saul were teaching in Antioch.  Then the Holy Spirit told Barnabas and Paul to leave on a journey.  So they went to Salamis and Cyprus with John Mark (Barnabas’ cousin) as a helper.  At Paphos in Cyprus they met a false prophet named Bar-Jesus who worked for Sergius Paulus.  Sergius wanted to hear what Barnabas and Saul had to say but Bar-Jesus (otherwise known as Elymas) opposed them.

Saul cursed Elymas, saying he was a child of the devil and temporarily blinded him.  Naturally, Sergius believed in Jesus after witnessing this.

From here, Paul sailed to Perga in Pamphylia where John left.  Then they went on to Pisidian Antioch.

Questions:

5a)  The Holy Spirit told them what to do and who was to do it

b)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Just what the early church members did:  pray and worship and let the Holy Spirit guide me in all facets of my life including church work.

6a)  Barnabas and Saul were the leaders in Acts 13:7.  BSF may say it was just Barnabas but every time in Acts 13 I see them mentioned together (13:2, 7) and the pronoun they is used repeatedly.  In 13:13, it switches to “Paul and his companions” so here I would say Paul since he is singled out by himself.

b)  Paul was the one who called Elymas out and blinded him.  God gave Paul this power and His authority, not Barnabas, and we can assume other incidents occurred to mark Paul as God’s chosen leader.

7a) At Pamphylia

b)  Probably a disagreement or a quarrel.  Why do most people leave?  “Irreconcilable differences”

c)  Paul’s trust

d)  Jerusalem

e)  Yes and no.  Barnabas and Paul fought over it (never good), ultimately resulting in them going their separate ways (Acts 15:36-40).  But this could be a good thing as well because with Paul and Barnabas split, they touched more people that way and spread the word faster.  However, eventually Mark and Paul reconciled as we see from the passages listed.  My study bible says Mark is thought to have accompanied Peter to Rome where Mark and Peter wrote the Book of Mark.  Fascinating stuff to see how one starts out and then grows to write part of a best-seller!  All with God’s help!

f)  Personal Question.  My answer:  Maybe.  If you consider this blog a Christian work and some in the past have accused me of changing BSF’s spirit.  But here it still is.  Hopefully helping others.

8 )  I like this map:  http://www.foundationsforfreedom.net/Article/Bible/NT/Acts/Acts_Map_1-2_Journeys.gif

The colors are bold and the route traced.  Just google “Paul’s First Missionary Journey” for many, many more maps.

I’ll leave the scale work to you all.  We all know travel was not easy back then.  It was dangerous and hard work and took a long time, especially by foot.

Conclusions:  Finally, map work not as an End Note!  Yeah!!!

Here, we see God’s plan unfolding before our eyes as He hand picks His chosen men to do His work.  We also see how human differences can serve God’s purposes as a quarrel leads to more and more people coming to Jesus.

Everything in life serves God’s purposes and He can use the bad and turn it into good.