Vs. 27, “On arriving there, they gathered the church together and reported all that God had done through them and how he had opened the door of faith to the Gentiles.” This chapter records the completion of Paul’s first misssionary journey. We see how God had impowered Paul to do miracles to help the unbelieving see the truth (For the NT had not yet been completed). However, in Lystra, the Gentiles believed Paul & Barnabas to be Zeus (Chief of the Gods) & Hermes (Messenger of the God’s). Just as Paul ordered Stephen to be stoned, the Jews stirred the crowds and they too stoned Paul. But Paul would barely escape death, and even near death…Paul would not give up. Paul & Barnabas go back to help ensure the planting of the Gospel is met with encouragement & foundation for these new believers & their churches.
Regarding application…Having Priorities. Vs. 26, “…they had been committed to the grace of God for the work they had now completed.” Paul & Barnabas knew their priorities. Christ was first, others were second, & they were last. Not only did they understand their priorities…they had the courage to see it to completion. David Sarnoff, An American pioneer & radio & televsion once said, “The will to persevere is often the difference between failure & success.” Question: How did Paul & Barnabas persevere? Because they knew their priorities! Sometimes, I have students who come up to me and ask me what are the most important priorities in their life? Of course, I tell them “GOD” must come first…no if, and’s or but’s. However, after that…it can get a little difficult. God has given each of you a family (Blood or adopted). He gave them to you for a reason & you must make every effort to be there for your family. I have only “one” mitigating circumstance where your family could be superceded. That is if they are asking you to do something that would cause you to disobey God’s will. Other than that, they are second. Your church family comes a VERY close third in this regard. Then, your efforts in schooling & giving your 100% (I Cor. 10:31) comes in fourth. That is my humble opinion on priorities.