Acts 14
The Visit to Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe
Triumph Amidst Trials: Miracles, Misunderstandings, and the Perseverance of Faith

Acts 14 demonstrates the incredible resilience and dedication of Paul and Barnabas amidst various trials on their missionary journey. Despite facing opposition, misunderstandings, and even physical harm, they persevere in sharing the Gospel and building up the Church. Their faith and courage serve as inspiring reminders that through the power of the Holy Spirit, believers can overcome obstacles to make known the good news of Jesus Christ.

Verses 1-7: Preaching and Persecution in Iconium

In Iconium, Paul and Barnabas preach the Gospel in the synagogue, leading many Jews and Gentiles to believe. However, some unbelieving Jews stir up gentiles against them, causing division. Despite the threats of stoning, Paul and Barnabas spend considerable time in Iconium, performing miracles and boldly speaking about God's grace.

Verses 8-18: Miracles and Misunderstandings in Lystra and Derbe

In Lystra, Paul heals a man crippled from birth, which leads the crowd to mistake Paul and Barnabas for gods. They call Paul, Hermes, and Barnabas, Zeus, planning to offer sacrifices to them. Paul and Barnabas are horrified and quickly correct the misunderstanding, emphasizing that they are mere humans and urging the crowd to turn from idolatry to the living God.

Verses 19-20: The Stoning of Paul

Jews from Antioch and Iconium come to Lystra, persuading the crowd against Paul. They stone Paul and drag him out of the city, thinking he is dead. However, when the disciples gather around him, he gets up and goes back into the city. The next day, he and Barnabas depart for Derbe.

Verses 21-23: Encouragement and Appointment of Elders

Paul and Barnabas continue preaching and making many disciples in Derbe. They then revisit Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, strengthening the disciples, encouraging them to remain true to the faith despite persecutions, and appointing elders in each church.

Verses 24-28: Return to Antioch in Syria

They travel through Pisidia, Pamphylia, Perga, Attalia, and finally return to Antioch in Syria, where they had been commissioned. They gather the church and report all that God had done through them, especially opening the door of faith to the Gentiles.

Acts 14 continues the account of Paul and Barnabas' first missionary journey, recounting their preaching, performing miracles, and facing persecution in various cities. Despite their struggles, they continue to spread the Gospel, appoint leaders, and strengthen the burgeoning Church.

Power of Miracles
Persecution and Persistence
Misunderstandings and Idolatry
Spreading the Gospel
Encouragement and Leadership
Preaching and Miracles in Iconium
Encounter in Lystra and Derbe
The Stoning of Paul
The Return to Antioch in Syria
Appointment of Elders
The people of Iconium
The people of Lystra and Derbe
Jewish antagonists
The crippled man
Newly appointed elders
Antioch, Syria
Bible Study Questions

1. What lessons can we learn from the boldness of Paul and Barnabas in preaching the Gospel amidst persecution in Iconium?

2. How does the miracle in Lystra demonstrate God's power?

3. How can we apply Paul and Barnabas' response to being mistaken for gods in our own lives when we face undue praise or worship?

4. How does the stoning of Paul reflect on the cost of discipleship?

5. What can we learn from Paul and Barnabas' effort to revisit the cities where they were persecuted to strengthen the disciples there?

6. How does the appointment of elders reflect the importance of leadership within the Church?

7. How does the perseverance of Paul and Barnabas amidst trials inspire you in your personal faith journey?

8. In what ways does the people's reaction to the miracle in Lystra challenge us to present the Gospel clearly to avoid misunderstandings?

9. How can we emulate Paul and Barnabas' commitment to sharing the Gospel in our own lives?

10. How does the reaction of the people of Lystra change from idolizing Paul and Barnabas to stoning Paul, and what does this tell us about the fickle nature of people?

11. How can we prepare ourselves to face the kind of persecution experienced by Paul and Barnabas?

12. How does Paul's recovery and return to the city after being stoned inspire you in your faith?

13. What lessons can we learn from the way Paul and Barnabas continually encouraged new believers to stay true to their faith?

14. How can the leadership model established by Paul and Barnabas in appointing elders inform the leadership structure in our own churches?

15. How does the journey of Paul and Barnabas from persecution in one city to bold proclamation in the next reflect on their reliance on God's guidance?

16. What does the chapter teach about the impact of external influences on the acceptance of the Gospel message?

17. What are some practical ways we can follow the example of Paul and Barnabas in strengthening the faith of fellow believers?

18. How does the conclusion of Paul and Barnabas' first missionary journey inspire you to share your personal testimonies of faith with others?

19. How does Acts 14 deepen your understanding of the costs and rewards of spreading the Gospel?

20. What does the phrase "we must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God" mean to you in your current circumstances?

Bible Hub Chapter Summaries and Bible Study Questions

Acts 13
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