We come in Acts 15:36ff to a parting of wars. Even the best of friends…. It’s sad, and there’s no way around it. What do you do when there seems like no way forward?
Passages for Meditation
- 2 Tim 4:9-10. Why might Paul want Timothy to come to him so quickly? Feel free to psychologize.
- 1 Chronicles 12:1-18. Obviously David would be politically and nationally encouraged by the events that transpire in this passage. How might he feel personally?
- Acts15:36 - 16:5. A difficult question: was Paul right?
There are some technical questions consider as well. When did “John called Mark” “withdraw?” Why did he do so? Why is Barnabas disposed to forgive? And why would such a seemingly mundane issue result in “sharp disagreement?”
Questions for Consideration
- When have you lost a partner in a common endeavor? What was lost in that loss? Was it worth it? Why or why not?
- Partnership is a better path to friendship than commonality. Agree or disagree? Does this passage (Acts 15:36ff) have something to say to that?
- If you, Paul, Barnabas, John Mark, and Silas were all in the same room, how might you direct the conversation?
Hymns for Proclamation
- 75 - O Father, You Are Sovereign
- 524 - Thy Works, Not Mine. O Christ
- 165 - Ye Servants of God, Your Master Proclaim
- 347 - The Church's One Foundation
In addition to our normal evening festivities, we will be formally receiving new members into our body; that makes for a good time to improve our baptism and consider the vows that we ourselves have made. How are you extending the Kingdom?
- Psalm: 106. Consider the faithfulness of God throughout history, and also in your own life story
- Hymn of the Month: 343. Christ is Made the Sure Foundation. Consider the efforts of Nehemiah and compare them to those of Jesus Christ. What does Jesus provide that Nehemiah can’t?
- Sermon Text: Nehemiah 13. To what extent are Nehemiah’s labors actually fruitful? Is he straightening pictures on the Titanic?
- Final Hymn: 529. Love Divine All Love’s Excelling. What encouragement can the church take in the love of Christ?