Last week we looked at the story of Peter being challenged in a vision (that soon became reality) to include Gentiles as the disciples share the good news of Jesus Christ (Acts 10:1-17, 34-48). In this week's story, the Holy Spirit continues to lead the early church in this direction. Paul and Barnabas are chosen (after a time of prayer and fasting) to begin preaching to Gentiles in Asia Minor (modern day Turkey). They travel to Lystra and after Paul heals a man who has never been able to walk, the crowd speculates that Paul must be Zeus and Barnabas must be Hermes (the messenger god) and want to offer sacrifices to them. Paul is horrified at this development and tries to convince them that he and Barnabas are ordinary mortals. It is God who is the source of healing and new life.
NOTE: Audio isn’t working until about 3:40 into the video.
Like many of you, I’m sure, I’ve been thinking a lot about Al Ahrens over the last several days. One of the privileges of being a pastor is sitting with the family at this tender, holy time and hearing their stories. I have heard so many great stories and remembrances, more than I can share with you all today—and I hope you have been doing that amongst yourselves and will continue to do so at the luncheon following the service.