Good evening, my brothers and sisters in Christ.
Acts 14: Paul's First Missionary Journeys- Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe
Jared discussed Acts Chapter 14, focusing on the Galatia, Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe churches. The conversation also included ordination. The unbelieving Jews forced the apostles to flee to Lystra and Derbe, but they continued to preach the gospel. A man who was crippled from birth was healed after hearing Paul speak, leading the people to worship Paul and Barnabas as gods mistakenly. Despite nearly being sacrificed, the apostles escaped and left for Derbe the next day.
Paul's Missionary Journey and Lystra's Division
Jared led a discussion about the progress of Paul and their missionary work as described in Acts 14. They pointed out several key moments, such as Paul and Barnabas preaching to the city of Lystra, the subsequent division it caused, and Paul's interaction with the man lame in Lystra. Jared also provided some geographical context about their journey from Antioch to various locations, including Iconium and Derbe. In addition, they discussed the possible translation of the term 'unbelieving Jews' as 'disobedient' based on the common Greek verb 'apeitheo'(meaning also to disobey).
Biblical Verses and Signs of Grace
Jared led a discussion focused on biblical verses from the books of Acts and Matthew. They highlighted the importance of speaking boldly in the Lord and how the Lord bears witness to the word of His grace, granting signs and wonders. They emphasized the parallels between Acts 4 and 14, noting that the prayer in Acts 4 follows a traditional liturgical formula of praise, remembrance of God's works, and petition. They also pointed out that the signs and wonders mentioned in Acts 4 were not simply requested but intended to give boldness to the preachers and confirm their words. Towards the end, they referenced Matthew 10:34-36, suggesting that Christ's truth will bring division, not peace.
Division, Evil, and Faith: A Discussion
Jared discussed the idea of Christ bringing division rather than peace, explaining that this was due to the existence of evil and the struggles it creates. They highlighted the inner resistance to repentance and the harmful effects of idolatry. Jared also shared the story of Paul and Barnabas's encounter with a community that initially praised them but later rejected and persecuted them. They emphasized the importance of faith, wisdom, and perseverance in facing challenges and tribulations.
Discipleship, Elders, and Ordination in the Church
Jared discussed the significance of making new disciples and strengthening existing believers within the church. They emphasized the importance of guarding and nurturing believers' souls and elders' role in leading and guiding the churches. Jared explained the concept of ordination, detailing its history within the early church and the Orthodox Church and how it's extended to bishops, priests, and deacons. They further clarified the ordination process, including laying hands, and its ongoing significance in today's church.
Orthodox Church and Book of Acts Discussion
Jared led a discussion on the Bible, specifically the Book of Acts and the Orthodox faith. They shared insights about the ordination process and the importance of prayer, hymns, and fellowship in the Orthodox church, emphasizing the communal and collective nature of the church. Jared also mentioned they would discuss Acts Chapter 15 in the next meeting, focusing on the Council of Jerusalem and early canon law.
Religious Discussion and Prayer Meeting
Jared led a religious discussion, invoking the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They closed the meeting with a prayer, asking for blessings, mercy, and peace. They also mentioned a study on the Book of Acts and considered the next topic. Toward the end, they emphasized the importance of maintaining a relationship with our Father in heaven.
In Christ, love Jared
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