- Centering prayer— Pray for illumination, “Lord, open my heart and mind by the power of the Holy Spirit,” and remain in silence.
- Read slowly, keeping any words or phrase that come to your mind, and mark on them.
- Close eyes and meditate on what you read.
- Take a note if you have question, inspiration.
Read Acts 15
Agreement and Disagreement in the church.
Luke recorded the Council at Jerusalem, how leaders of the church settled the issue and eventually they lay the foundation to extend Christian faith to the world.
Debating issue — The issue was if one of Moses’ law, circumcision, was the condition for salvation. It was a debating issue in Antioch church in which most of the congregation were Gentile.
Process — Antioch church sent Paul, Barnaba, other believers to Jerusalem church to discuss about it. Two pillars of Jerusalem church, Peter and James provided leadership to discuss the issue. Paul and Barnaba testified what God had done among Gentiles.
Discernment — “Salvation was through the faith of the Lord Jesus,” was confirmed, along with four practices proposed to observe. The settlement was compromise to be relevant to the community. (V 21).
The Jerusalem Council made a door for Gentile mission wide, turning point from Jerusalem centered Christianity to worldwide Christianity.
Disagreement — Paul and Barnaba disagreed on taking John Mark as mission partner. Each took different rout, brining with different partner. Their amicable separation eventually turned out to strengthen the mission of the church. It was the beginning of Paul’s second missionary journey.
After Reading —- Reflection and prayer.
- Reflect on this question, “What does God speak to me today in this chapter?
- Pray that God’s word today be the way, the life, and the truth to you.
- Live it out through the day.