(Acts 15:30-41) – Encouragement and Disagreement
After the long discussion regarding the law, the believers are sent out to deliver the news about the decision.
When Godly people gather and make wise decisions, the results are good and pleasing to God’s people. Proverbs has many verses about the joy of the people living under righteous leaders.
It’s not just the one time decision that brought encouragement to the Gentile believers, it was the consistent investment thereafter…
Then, on the brink of setting out on their second missionary journey, Paul and Barnabas experience a dispute with one another about John-Mark.
Paul looked at his past record and thought it wise not to have him come again, probably because he didn’t want to have to worry about whether or not he would quit.
He looked at things as they were. He knew that the spiritual war they were in was serious and required a serious commitment. You can’t take just anyone into battle with you. You need to choose your team wisely.
Barnabas looked at Mark for what he could become. Even though he hadn’t earned back their trust, he was willing to take a chance and bring him along.
I think Barnabas was hoping that by having Mark with them, it would influence him and bring him closer to Jesus. He was willing to be patient and work with him even in his immature state.
Honestly, I think there’s wisdom in both of these perspectives. Each person has to decide what the faith choice is and run with that. That may look different for each of us.
The guys felt so strongly that they went in different directions of service. They didn’t hate each other, they just knew that serving together requires being on the same page.