Peter and Paul: Part 11 of 16—Rightly Dividing The Word Of God.

Acts 13:13-15
“Now when Paul and his party set sail from Paphos, they came to Perga in Pamphylia; and John, departing from them, returned to Jerusalem. 14 But when they departed from Perga, they came to Antioch in Pisidia, and went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day and sat down. 15 And after the reading of the Law and the Prophets, THE RULERS OF THE SYNAGOGUE SENT TO THEM, SAYING, “Men and brethren, if you have any word of exhortation for the people, say on.”

Paul preaches the gospel to the Gentiles.

God raised the Apostle Paul to preach His gospel of grace.  This was the very same young man who had stood by, guarding the coats of those who stoned godly Stephen.  In so doing, he was consenting to his death.  Strange thing was, he was the most legalistic of all the Pharisees of his day; a Pharisee of Pharisees!  Now here he is preaching about Jesus far and wide.  Talk about a turnaround!

First Peter, Then Paul.

As you read through the book of Acts, you’ll notice that, though Peter dominates the first half, he is featured less and less as the Jewish people continued to reject Jesus. Paul, on the other hand, is featured more and more until finally, at the end of the book, it is all Paul.  Why?  We’re about to find out.

In summation:  The Jews in their headquarters of Jerusalem through their leadership rejected the Messiah in Person.  Then He rose from the dead, was seen by over 500 people in His resurrected form.  They rejected Him again.  Then they rejected Jesus in the preaching of Peter.  

Three chances to receive their Messiah.  Three times they rejected Him. The rejection of Jesus by the Jewish leaders of the homeland was complete.  That was the end of God’s dealing with them.

Jews Of Diaspora.

Through Paul, God was then going to give the JEWS OF THE DISPERSION a chance to hear the gospel and accept their Messiah.  Who are they?  They are the ones who, for one reason or another, didn’t return after one of their many captivities, as we discussed in an earlier portion of this study.

Daniel is an example of one who never returned.  After each of their captivities, some came back to their homeland, but most did not. The same is true in these last days.  Though many have returned to their ancient homeland of Israel from all the nations of the world in these last days, as prophesied in Ezekiel 34, a great many more are still out there.  We may not know who the 12 tribes are, but they are not lost.

God raised Paul to go and preach the gospel to these Jewish people. After all, if God gave the those of homeland a chance, the Jews of the dispersion must also be given the same opportunity. Who better to send to them than a “Pharisee of Pharisees?!

To The Jew First.
Paul always preached the gospel “To the Jew FIRST, then to the Gentiles.” Every city to which he traveled, he went into the synagogue first and preached to his own people, because he loved them.  Only after they rejected Jesus, which invariably happened, did he turn and preach to the Gentiles.  Thus began his missionary journeys.

In Pisidea Antioch he preached about Jesus in the synagogue saying, “Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through this Man is preached to you the forgiveness of sins; and by Him everyone who believes is justified from all things from which you could not be justified by the law of Moses. (Acts 13:38-39)

Paul preached the gospel of Grace! He told his Jewish brethren was that no one any more could be justified by the Law of Moses.  Even back then, that was not possible.  It was always through offering right sacrifices.  Now, since the cross, it could ONLY be by the Blood of Jesus.  LAW IS OUT: GRACE IS IN!  

How did they respond?  “So when the Jews went out of the synagogue, THE GENTILES BEGGED that these words might be preached to them the next Sabbath.” (Acts 13:38-39)   They Paul went out of the synagogue; and look who begged him to preach to them:  GENTILES!  They were the hungry ones!

Hungry Gentiles!

Watch what happens next….”On the next Sabbath, almost the whole city came together to hear the word of God. BUT WHEN THE JEWS SAW THE MULTITUDES, THEY WERE FILLED WITH ENVY; AND CONTRADICTING AND BLASPHEMING, THEY OPPOSED THE THINGS SPOKEN BY PAUL.…..” Acts 13:44

The ol’ green-eyed monster of jealousy strikes again. The Jews became very jealous and angry, arguing amongst themselves and opposing what Paul preached. The real Gospel, the message of God’s Grace, really stirs the devil up in some people.  This still happens in the church today.  There are those who look at grace and despise it, mistakenly believing it to be the devil’s work.  Sadly, the “gospel” they’re used to hearing actually IS the devil’s work. It’s backwards!

Listen to Paul’s response:  “Then Paul and Barnabas grew bold and said, “It was necessary that the word of God should be spoken to you first; BUT SINCE YOU REJECT IT, JUDGE YOURSELVES UNWORTHY OF EVERLASTING LIFE. BEHOLD, WE TURN TO THE GENTILES.” (Acts 13:45-46)

God’s Ideal.

God’s plan was that the church would be made up of Jews and Gentiles. The Jews would be saved first, then they would turn and evangelize the whole world. They are the ones who were supposed to reach out to the Gentiles.

You can plainly see that God is giving His people chance after chance. Sadly, we now see that the Jews of the dispersion are also rejecting their Messiah through the preaching of Paul; First in Pisidia Antioch, then Lydia, Mysia and Bithinia.

That was the plan: Everywhere he preached, Paul first went into the synagogue to preach the gospel to the Jews THEN, when the they rejected the truth, he turned and preached to the Gentiles who received it with great joy!

If you wish to continue this study you may proceed to Part 12 in this series on Rightly Dividing The Word Of God by following the link below. Paul lands in Rome at last and gives the Jewish leaders of the dispersion their last chance:

4 thoughts on “Peter and Paul: Part 11 of 16—Rightly Dividing The Word Of God.

  1. Ma’am in this part of passage you type
    Act 3:13-15 but it was Act 13:13-15
    it’s done by you knowingly so we can look into Bible or it’s typing error. But I am been blessed by your teaching. God bless you ma’am.


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