Bible Reading and Commentary November 16-21, 2015
Bible Reading and Commentary
November 16-21, 2015
Monday, November 16, Acts 13
Vv. 2-3 — Barnabas and Saul are commissioned to be the first foreign missionaries in the early Christian Church. The laying on of hands is also done by pastors today as we install new pastors in our congregations. With the laying on of hands, an appropriate Bible passage is spoken, with a short word of encouragement.
v. 9— Saul’s new name, Paul, is introduced. Saul was his Jewish name. Paul was his Roman name. Roman citizens had privileges Jews didn’t have. This aided Paul in his mission work among the Gentiles.
v. 14 — The Apostle Paul began his mission work in Jewish synagogues because the Jewish people had a background in God’s Word and some were looking for the Messiah. In the United States, our missionaries do mission work at times in somewhat the same way. We look for WELS members. They often become the nucleus of a new congregation.
Tuesday, November 17, Acts 14
v. 17 — Underline.
v. 22 — Some of the hardships or tribulations we face as Christians chiefly come from those who are opposed to God’s Word. Sometimes that difficulty can come from those within the church and in our family. Look at what Jesus said in Luke 12:51-53.
Wednesday, November 18, Acts 15
v. 5 — The false teachers described in v. 5 were called “Judaizers.” We meet them again in Gal. 2:11-16. Why they were given the name “Judaizers” probably was because they came from Judea to Antioch (v. 1). Their false teaching was that keeping the Law of Moses was also necessary for eternal salvation. God’s Word clearly states that eternal salvation is a free gift of God without any works. Cf. v. 11; Chap. 4:12; Eph. 2:8,9.
v. 29 — The Gentile Christians were not forced to be circumcised, but were requested to “avoid those things mentioned” in v. 29. This was asked of them so as not to create offense.
v. 40 — Paul’s first missionary journey began at the beginning of Chapter 13. His second journey begins at verse 40 of chapter 15.
Thursday, November 19 Acts 16
Vv. 6-9 — This still happens today. The Holy Spirit has brought our Synod this same urgent appeal, not through visions, but through correspondence: “Please come over and help us.”
v. 31 — Paul gives the jailor this simple truth of salvation, “Believe on the Lord Jesus and you will be saved.”
Friday, November 20, Acts 17
v. 4 — These God-fearing Greeks, who became Christians, received their knowledge of the Gospel from the Apostle Paul in Thessalonica.
v. 11 — Underline. The Bereans set an example for us all to follow. What was it? Read also Col. 3:16.
v. 28 — How heathen people come to the conclusion that God created the world is from nature. (Rom. 1:20) This, however, led them to idolatry. The horrors of idolatry can be seen in vv. 16 and 23. The Athenians, to be sure they didn’t miss any god, built an altar and inscribed on it, “To An Unknown God.” How grateful we should be that we don’t live in such fearful confusion and such a hopeless state. Think of St. John’s words in I John 5:11, 12.
Saturday, November 21, Acts 18
Vv. 22-23 — Paul ended his second missionary journey in Antioch. His third missionary journey begins with v. 23.
v. 24 — Apollos probably studied a Greek translation of the Hebrew Old Testament known as the Septuagint. That translation was produced in Alexandria, Egypt, beginning at 250 B.C. He was well-versed in Scripture, yet his knowledge was incomplete. Aquila and Priscilla further instructed him.
v. 26 — Mission work is not only done by pastors and teachers. Aquilla and Priscilla were a Christian couple dedicated to their Savior and bringing His saving name to others, such as Apollos. St. Peter reminds us in his first epistle, chapter 2:9 and 3:15 that this is the responsibility of every Christian.