When Holy Spirit Given to Gentiles 4/27/20
Using 29. 30, 31; God’s 7 Kingdoms Diagram E.
29. 50 days after Jesus Resurrection on Feast of Weeks/Pentecost Iyar 22, 30AD; the gifts of the Holy Spirit was given to the 12 apostles, 1st for Jew then Gentile. Then indwelling/gifts of the Spirit was given faithful Jews/Israel who accepted Jesus.
Jesus told His disciples not to leave Jerusalem until they were baptized, anointed, and given gifts by the Holy Spirit; for Jesus promised to send them the gifts of the Holy Spirit after He ascended to Heaven.
*On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: "Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit." Ac 1:4-5 NIV+
*But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you. Jn 14:26 NKJV+
Jesus gave the disciples the indwelling of the Spirit on Resurrection Sunday, so the Holy Spirit could live in their hearts, and sanctify them. The Spirit gave them the love and faith to believe in Jesus, set them apart as children of God, and continually forgive their sins; so their spiritual being remained holy, so the Holy Spirit, Jesus, and our Heavenly Father could live within them.
*And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. 1Co 6:11 ESV+
*For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God. Ro 8:13-14 ESV+
*Jesus answered and said to him, "If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him. Jn 14:23 NKJV
These spiritual gifts were given to the 12 disciples, now called apostles, for Jesus was sending them out to the Jews/Israel to preach the good news of His atoning grace for their sins upon the cross. They were given the gifts of the Spirit 50 days after Resurrection Day, at the Feast of Weeks (we now celebrate Pentecost); one of the 7 Feasts God gave Israel to celebrate which was annually held at the Temple in Jerusalem.
*'And you shall count for yourselves from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering: seven Sabbaths shall be completed. Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall offer a new grain offering to the Lord. Lev 23:15-16 NKJV+
*He appointed twelve--designating them apostles --that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach and to have authority to drive out demons. These are the twelve he appointed: Simon (to whom he gave the name Peter); James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them he gave the name Boanerges, which means Sons of Thunder); Andrew, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James son of Alphaeus, Thaddaeus, Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him. Mk 3:14-19 NIV+
Later Matthias would replace Judas as the 12th apostle, for Judas hung himself after he betrayed Jesus.
*And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias, and he was numbered with the eleven apostles. Ac 1:26 ESV+
These 12 apostles were gathered together in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost/Feast of Weeks. When suddenly tongues as of fire sat on their heads showing them they were given the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit gave them the strength to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to all the faithful Jews/Israel who came to this celebration; the physical ability to have the words they spoke heard at the same time in the many tongues, the many different native languages of the faithful Jews/Israel who were listening to them.
*When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place. And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Ac 2:1-2 ESV+
*Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. Ac 2:3-4 NKJV+
Faithful Jews/Israel: (1) Those of the tribe of Judea, Benjamin, Levi (took care of the Temple in Jerusalem); (2) those of the 10 lost tribes who were dispersed after being captured by Romans; (3) proselytes; Gentiles who converted to the Jewish faith, ceremonial laws, moral laws, and were circumcised, though they could not come into the Temple, were restricted to a special court around it. For a while there were 13 tribes, tribe of Joseph split into Ephraim and Manasseh; which will be consolidated back to the single tribe of Joseph, as only 12 tribes of Israel will come into Jesus 1,000 year Kingdom. See Nation of Israel
The faithful Jews/Israel gathered here to celebrate the Feast of Weeks were devout men from every nation under heaven; included proselytes (Gentiles) who had converted to the Jewish faith, followed Jewish ceremonial laws, and were circumcised.
*Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven. Ac 2:5 ESV+
*Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God.” Ac 2:9-12 ESV+
Notice in verse above there were some faithful Jewish/Israel men from Cyrene who were here, accepted Jesus, and would later bring the gospel to the Gentiles in Antioch in 31 below.
Those present were amazed that the words they heard the 12 apostles speaking were in their own native language. How could anyone speak words that were heard differently by those listening, each hearing the same words the Apostles spoke in their own native language. Most believed it was a miracle, while a few mockers who thought they were drunk on new wine.
*And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language? Ac 2:8 ESV+
*And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” But others mocking said, “They are filled with new wine.” Ac 2:12-13 ESV+
Those who accepted the miracle which was happening, did what Peter told them to do to be saved; they repented of their sins, were water baptized which symbolized how the Heavenly Father washed their sins away. So He could give them the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. And once any receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, we will continue to receive gifts of the Spirit to help us follow our God, to do the work He has given us to do; all of our lives.
*Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" Then Peter said to them, "Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Ac 2:37-40 NKJV+
About 3,000 Jews/Israel received the indwelling of the Spirit, and would continually receive the gifts of the Spirit to increase their faith, do the work God had planned for them to do. And the promise of the Holy Spirit was given to the Jews/Israel for their children, to all in the many nations which were far away; as many as God would call. The indwelling and gifts of the Holy Spirit would be given later on after the Jews/Israel, to the Gentiles.
*For the promise is to you and to your children, and to all who are afar off, as many as the Lord our God will call." And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, "Be saved from this perverse generation." Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. Ac 2:41 NKJV+
30. 5 years later 35AD, Holy Spirit 1st given Gentiles (Cornelius); yet Peter/apostles did not reach out to Gentiles
Jesus told His 12 apostles to bring the gospel to all the Jews/Israel in the world, beginning at Jerusalem.
*and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. "You are witnesses of these things. "And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high." Lk 24:47-49 NASB+
Then the apostles were to be Jesus witnesses in all of Judea, then Samaria, and then to the ends of the earth. They were first to seek out all who were heirs of God’s prophets from the beginning, and the covenant God made with Abraham.
*But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." Ac 1:8 NIV+
*And you are heirs of the prophets and of the covenant God made with your fathers. He said to Abraham, 'Through your offspring all peoples on earth will be blessed.' When God raised up his servant, he sent him first to you to bless you by turning each of you from your wicked ways." Ac 3:25-26 NIV+
God would first give the indwelling/gifts of the Holy Spirit to Gentiles around 5 years later, when He sent Peter to the house of Cornelius, a Roman soldier; a Gentile who believed in God, but was not circumcised, did not follow all of the Jewish/Israel laws of Moses. After disclosing to Peter in a dream that it was now permissible for him to enter a Gentile household, tell the good news of Christ’s atoning grace to Gentiles who now could be make clean; just like all the food God had shown Peter which He had now made clean to eat. Read complete story Acts chapter 10 through 11:18
*At Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of what was known as the Italian Cohort, a devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God. Ac 10:1-2 ESV+
*Looking at it closely, I observed animals and beasts of prey and reptiles and birds of the air. And I heard a voice saying to me, ‘Rise, Peter; kill and eat.’ But I said, ‘By no means, Lord; for nothing common or unclean has ever entered my mouth.’ But the voice answered a second time from heaven, ‘What God has made clean, do not call common.’ Ac 11:6-9 ESV+
Peter told them how Jesus had died on the cross for their sins; and Cornelius together with his entire household repented, accepted Jesus and they were given the indwelling and gifts of the Holy Spirit. For they were talking in tongues glorifying God, just like the apostles did when they received the Spirit. Peter then realized God had chosen them just as He had chosen the apostles. Peter had no choice but to water baptize them; showing that God had washed away their sins, given them the Holy Spirit, and inviting them into the fellowship of the family of God.
*"Right then three men who had been sent to me from Caesarea stopped at the house where I was staying. The Spirit told me to have no hesitation about going with them. These six brothers also went with me, and we entered the man's house. Ac 11:11-12 NIV+
*"And as I began to speak, the Holy Spirit fell upon them just as He did upon us at the beginning. "And I remembered the word of the Lord, how He used to say, 'John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.' "Therefore if God gave to them the same gift as He gave to us also after believing in the Lord Jesus Christ, who was I that I could stand in God's way? When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, "Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life." Ac 11:15-18 NASB+
*For they heard them speak with tongues and magnify God. Then Peter answered, "Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?" And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days. Ac 10:46-48 NKJV+
Peter, the other apostles and their Jewish/Israel brothers in Jerusalem at this time did not reach out to Gentiles, but first to Jews/Israel and Samaritans as instructed by Jesus. For Jesus had already called Saul a Jewish Pharisee who was persecuting those who followed Jesus; he would later change his name to Paul and become an Apostle who would reach out to the Gentiles.
*On the contrary, they saw that I had been entrusted with the task of preaching the gospel to the Gentiles [Greek uncircumcised], just as Peter had been to the Jews [Greek circumcised; also in verses 8 and 9]. For God, who was at work in the ministry of Peter as an apostle to the Jews, was also at work in my ministry as an apostle to the Gentiles. Gal 2:7-8 NIV+
31. 7 years later 42 AD, Holy Spirit given to Gentiles in Antioch by unknown believers. 1st called Christian here to distinguish themselves from disciples. Then Saul/Paul with apostles/evangelists brought gospel to Gentiles.
http://biblehub.com/timeline/ There are many different timelines for when Saul/Paul brought the Gospel to the Gentiles. We will use the timeline above. If you follow it down it shows how Jesus used Saul/Paul to bring His gospel to the Gentile world.
Around 31 AD a devout Jewish Pharisee named Saul who would later call himself Paul, began persecuting the Jewish/Israel believers of Jesus in Jerusalem. Saul was traveling to Damascus to persecute them there also, when suddenly Jesus appeared in a bright light which blinded Saul. Jesus told Saul to go into Damascus where He would tell Saul what was appointed for him to do.
*“As I was on my way and drew near to Damascus, about noon a great light from heaven suddenly shone around me. Ac 22:6 ESV+
*And I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’ And since I could not see because of the brightness of that light, I was led by the hand by those who were with me, and came into Damascus. Ac 22:10-11 ESV
Jesus in a dream told Ananias, a Jewish/Israel believer in Damascus, to go to Saul and help him; though Ananias was reluctant to do it for Saul had been persecuting Jewish/Israel believers. But Jesus told Ananias that Jesus had chosen Saul to bring His name before the Gentiles, kings and the children of Israel.
*Then Ananias answered, "Lord, I have heard from many about this man, how much harm he has done to Your saints in Jerusalem. And here he has authority from the chief priests to bind all who call on Your name." But the Lord said to him, "Go, for he is a chosen vessel of Mine to bear My name before Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel. For I will show him how many things he must suffer for My name's sake." Ac 9:13-16 NKJV+
Saul would suffer mighty during the 11 years before his message would be accepted; for the rest of His life. The Chief Priest, King Herod, the Jews/Israel who followed the Laws of Moses, Gentiles who followed other idols, Romans; flogged him, beat him, tried to kill him; he was shipwrecked and finally killed by the Romans for following Jesus. 2Co 11:25
*From the Jews five times I received forty stripes minus one. Three times I was beaten with rods; once I was stoned; three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I have been in the deep; in journeys often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils of my own countrymen, in perils of the Gentiles, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; in weariness and toil, in sleeplessness often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness—2Co 11:24-27 NKJV+
Saul over a 3 year period went into the desert in Arabia where Jesus through the Holy Spirit taught Saul the truths He wanted Saul to preach among the Gentiles. He returned to Damascus where his message was not accepted; then Saul went to Jerusalem to meet and be accepted by Peter.
*to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood, nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus. Then after three years I went up to Jerusalem to see Peter, and remained with him fifteen days. Gal 1:16-18 NKJV+
Barnabas a Levite from Cypress befriended Paul in Jerusalem, yet Saul’s message was reviled there by the Greek Jews (Hellenistic); who then plotted to kill him To protect Paul the brethren of believers sent Saul to Taurus, where Saul was from.
*But Paul said, "I am a Jew of Tarsus in Cilicia, a citizen of no insignificant city; and I beg you, allow me to speak to the people." Ac 21:39 NASB+
*But Barnabas took hold of him and brought him to the apostles and described to them how he had seen the Lord on the road, and that He had talked to him, and how at Damascus he had spoken out boldly in the name of Jesus. And he was with them, moving about freely in Jerusalem, speaking out boldly in the name of the Lord. And he was talking and arguing with the Hellenistic Jews; but they were attempting to put him to death. But when the brethren learned of it, they brought him down to Caesarea and sent him away to Tarsus. Ac 9:27-30 NASB+
In 42 AD in Antioch, 12 years after Jesus was resurrected, 11 years after Jesus called Saul, the gospel was openly preached for the 1st time to a crowd of non-believing Gentiles; by Jewish/Israel disciples of Jesus from Cyprus and Cyrene. And for the 1st time our Heavenly Father gave a general gathering of unbelieving Gentiles there the indwelling/gifts of the Holy Spirit so they could believe in Jesus.
*So then those who were scattered because of the persecution that occurred in connection with Stephen made their way to Phoenicia and Cyprus and Antioch, speaking the word to no one except to Jews alone. But there were some of them, men of Cyprus and Cyrene, who came to Antioch and began speaking to the Greeks also, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them, and a large number who believed turned to the Lord. Ac 11:19-21 NASB+
Note in 29. 5th paragraph down there were devout Jews/Israel from Cyrene given indwelling/gifts of Holy Spirit at Feast of Weeks/Pentecost. There were also Jewish/Israel believers from Cyprus Barnabas’s native home.
In God’s plan of salvation He would use unknown shepherds to be the first witness after Joseph and Mary to see the baby Jesus; 2 unknown women to be the first to see Jesus after He was resurrected, and here unknown men were the first to bring the gospel directly to a general crowd of unbelieving Gentiles. God has a job for all of us to do, even the insignificant ones who will remain unknown; until Jesus rewards us all in Heaven for what we have done.
Barnabas was sent to Antioch when the church in Jerusalem received a report of Gentiles accepting Jesus as their Savior in Antioch. When Barnabas saw Gentiles accepting Jesus as their Savior there, he went to Tarsus to get Saul to help him bring more Gentiles to Jesus. Saul’s gospel message was accepted here and together with Barnabas they began spreading the gospel to the Gentiles in 42 AD; 11 years after Jesus had called Saul on the road to Damascus the bring the Gentiles to Him .
*The report of this came to the ears of the church in Jerusalem, and they sent Barnabas to Antioch. When he came and saw the grace of God, he was glad, and he exhorted them all to remain faithful to the Lord with steadfast purpose, Ac 11:22-23 ESV+
*Then Barnabas departed for Tarsus to seek Saul. And when he had found him, he brought him to Antioch. So it was that for a whole year they assembled with the church and taught a great many people. And the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. Ac 11:25-26 NKJV+
Notice underlined in the verse above that here the disciples were first called Christians in Antioch. The Gentiles wanted to be called Christians for they were spiritually united with Christ; wanted to separate themselves from the Jewish/Israel disciples who still observed the ceremonial law, many even believed they had be circumcised to follow Jesus.
In 48 AD Saul (Jewish/Israel name) changed his name to Paul (Roman/Gentile name) before his 1st missionary journey to bring the Gentiles to Jesus, taking Barnabas with him. When he returned to returned to Antioch after his journey there were 3 groups in Antioch.
(1) The Jews/Israel who did not accept Jesus, still followed Jewish/Israel ceremonial laws of Moses.
*When the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and talked abusively against what Paul was saying. Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly: "We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. For this is what the Lord has commanded us: "'I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.' " Ac 13:45-47 NIV+
(2) The Jews/Israel who followed Jesus but still observed ceremonial laws; some even circumcision. This included Peter (Cephas), even Barnabas.
*But when Cephas came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he stood condemned. For before certain men came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing the circumcision party. And the rest of the Jews acted hypocritically along with him, so that even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy. Gal 1:11-13 ESV+
(3) The Gentiles who wanted to be called Christians, believed Jesus had forgiven their sins, and they did not need the Jewish/Israel ceremonial law of Moses to be saved.
*And certain men came down from Judea and taught the brethren, "Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved." Ac 15:1 NKJV+
Then there was great dissension (no small dissension) and dispute with Paul and Barnabas disagreeing with Peter and the other Jewish/Israel disciples there from Judea about circumcision, other ceremonial laws of Moses which one had to follow to be saved. So it was agreed to take these matters before the council in Jerusalem.
*"Therefore, when Paul and Barnabas had no small dissension and dispute with them, they determined that Paul and Barnabas and certain others of them should go up to Jerusalem, to the apostles and elders, about this question. Ac 15:1-2 NKJV+
The council consisted of some of the 12 apostles and elders, men who were chosen by the disciples in Jerusalem. James, Jesus brother, was an important elder in this council.
This very important decision of how a Gentile who accepted Jesus could be saved was brought before the Council in Jerusalem in 48 AD. Peter told the council about how God had 1st given the indwelling/gifts of the Holy Spirit to the Gentiles (Cornelius and family); after he had told them about Jesus and they had accepted Jesus as their Savior (see 30. 4th paragraph above). They were saved through the grace of Jesus the same as the Jews/Israel were. Why should anyone put another test on them that our fathers and we have been able to keep. Only the grace of Jesus was needed for the Jews/Israel to be saved, just like nothing else will be needed for the Gentiles to be saved.
*And God, who knows the heart, bore witness to them, by giving them the Holy Spirit just as he did to us, and he made no distinction between us and them, having cleansed their hearts by faith. Now, therefore, why are you putting God to the test by placing a yoke on the neck of the disciples that neither our fathers nor we have been able to bear? But we believe that we will be saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, just as they will.” Ac 15:8-11 ESV+
So the council decided not to lay any other requirements on the Gentiles except; they abstain from eating sacrificed animals made to other idols, from drinking blood or animals that have been strangled, and from sexual immorality. Then the council wrote a letter to the Gentiles in Antioch telling them this in the verse below.
*For it has seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us to lay on you no greater burden than these requirements: that you abstain from what has been sacrificed to idols, and from blood, and from what has been strangled, and from sexual immorality. If you keep yourselves from these, you will do well. Farewell.” Ac 15:28-29 ESV+
Now in 48 AD, 18 years after Jesus resurrection; the true way our God spiritually saves us in the New Covenant of Christ’s grace was finally revealed and accepted. We are saved by faith, not works, less anyone should boast.
*For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. Eph 2:8-9 ESV+
The Holy Spirit revealed to Paul, other holy apostles and prophets who had been given the indwelling/gifts of the Holy Spirit; the spiritual mystery which saves us. The gospel message of Jesus Christ; that all who give up our will and repent will have our sins forgiven by our Heavenly Father through Jesus atoning sacrifice on the cross. So our spiritual being can become holy, and the Holy Spirit can dwell within them; and we spiritually become holy children of God.
*In reading this, then, you will be able to understand my insight into the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to men in other generations as it has now been revealed by the Spirit to God's holy apostles and prophets. This mystery is that through the gospel the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body, and sharers together in the promise in Christ Jesus. Eph 3:4-6 NIV+
The Holy Spirit continually sanctifies us, forgives the sins of believers who are led by Him to follow Jesus. That through this gospel Gentiles become heirs with the Jews/Israel, both become members of the body of Christ, His One Holy Spiritual Church. All holy children of God become spiritually one with Jesus, spiritually one with each other, yet physically remain separate physical races on earth; until Israel is no longer a nation, when our Heavenly Father takes us into His New Heaven, New Earth, and New Jerusalem.
*But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit with Him. 1Co 6:17 NKJV+
*And all Mine are Yours, and Yours are Mine, and I am glorified in them. Now I am no longer in the world, but these are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep through Your name those whom You have given Me, that they may be one as We are. Jn 17:10 NKJV+
*For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. Ro 12:4-5 ESV+
We are much more than disciples of Jesus, we are children of God. We should not desire to be disciples who were under the Old Covenant or disciples in a 40 year transition period; who were still saved by the ceremonial Law of Moses until 70 AD (see 32 below). Jesus did not send Gentiles out to make disciples of all people, He sent His Jewish/Israel Apostles and disciples out to bring the Jews/Israel first into the New Covenant of His grace. They did this while under the transition period, which allowed time for the Jewish/Israel people to accept Christ’s atoning grace without ceremonial law. We must bring all in by Christ’s sacrificial atonement on the cross alone; there is no longer any other way.
*Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age." Amen. Matt 28:19-20
Paul wants us to preach the Gospel to everyone, to all nations. Today we do it by telling all around us about our great God, by bringing the gospel to all nations by supporting the evangelists and mission who go out to all nations; by sending out the message by internet, supporting others who bring the message through the internet to the world.
*How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent? As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!" Ro 10:14-15 BIV+
After the book of Acts, disciples are never mentioned again by any writer in the Bible including Paul and Peter. Paul used the word saint(s) which means holy ones 56 times (ESV+); referring to all who have a holy spiritual being, have the indwelling of the Spirit; even those who have physically died and their holy spiritual being is in the 2nd Heaven. Yet the most common used words are brethren or brothers, and sisters; though believers, and children or family of God are also commonly used.
Saints living on earth
Saints in 2nd Heaven: body died, holy spiritual being living in 2nd Heaven/Kingdom of God/Paradise
*so that he may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father, at the coming of our Lord Jesus with all his saints. 1Thess 3:13 ESV+
Peter, other apostles, and the Jewish/Israel elders and disciples (especially from Jerusalem or Judea); had a hard understanding, and accepting the idea of the free gift of Christ’s grace which forgives our sins.
*and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. 2Pe 3:15-16 NASB+
*Therefore, dear friends, since you already know this, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of lawless men and fall from your secure position. But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and forever! Amen. 2Pe 3:17-18 NIV+
This would cause many Jews/Israel who had been given the indwelling of the Holy Spirit to turn back to the Laws of Moses. By rejecting Jesus blood as the only sacrifice which will forgive our sins, they have insulted the Holy Spirit, pushed Him out of their hearts; and without the Holy Spirit sanctifying them their sins are not forgiven, they are no longer holy children of God. Once saved always saved not true
*For in the case of those who have once been enlightened and have tasted of the heavenly gift and have been made partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, it is impossible to renew them again to repentance, since they again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame. Heb 6:4-6 NASB+
*Anyone who has set aside the Law of Moses dies without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. How much severer punishment do you think he will deserve who has trampled under foot the Son of God, and has regarded as unclean the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has insulted the Spirit of grace? Heb 10:28-29 NASB+
Our Heavenly Father had only given them the indwelling of the Holy Spirit as a pledge, a down payment for Paradise; and because they were no longer willing to stay with Jesus, share in His sufferings, they would no longer share in His glory.
*Now He who prepared us for this very purpose is God, who gave to us the Spirit as a pledge [Or a down payment]. 2Co 5:5 NASB+
*The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God's children. Now if we are children, then we are heirs--heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory Ro 8:16-17 NIV+
At this council meeting in 48 AD it was agreed that Paul would go to the Gentiles and Peter to the Jews/Israel. Paul now did the job Jesus wanted him to do; brought the gospel to the Gentile world, to everyone in it including the Jews/Israel. Peter brought the gospel to the Jews/Israel, but as they continue to reject Jesus, and return back to the ceremonial laws of Moses, Peter went to Rome and brought the gospel to the Gentile world also.
*James, Peter [Cephas] and John, those reputed to be pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the Jews. Gal 2:9 NIV+
*For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles— if indeed you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace which was given to me for you; Eph 3:1-2 NASB+
Paul went on 3 missionary journeys to different parts of the Gentile world, then was finally taken to Rome as a prisoner to stand trial there, and pronounced the gospel there. Paul started and set up many churches with believers God gave him to help build up the body of Christ. This included apostles (Peter came to Rome) prophets, evangelists, ministers (pastors), teachers who would equip believers to bring the gospel to others.
Jesus used Paul more than any other to bring His gospel to the Gentiles. Paul wrote 13 books (maybe 14 Hebrews unknown) in the Bible which is almost ½ of the books in the New Testament, which is still bringing the gospel message to us almost 2,000 years later. Jesus also put Paul through all the adversity any could have for following Jesus, as a lesson for us to preserver also. Most believe Paul was behead by the Romans (64-68 AD) for teaching us about our Savior; for he had roman citizenship and could not be crucified.
*Now I am speaking to you Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle to the Gentiles, I magnify my ministry in order somehow to make my fellow Jews jealous, and thus save some of them. Ro 11:13-14 ESV+
*for which I was appointed a preacher and an apostle--I am speaking the truth in Christ and not lying--a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth. 1Ti 2:7 NKJV+
1st and 2nd Corinthians; 1st and 2nd Thessalonians; 1st and 2nd Timothy: 6
Ephesians; Colossians; Galatians; Philemon; Philippians; Romans; Titus: 7 6+7=13
Writer of Hebrews unknown, many believe it was Paul
God gave Paul the gospel of Christ’s grace by which we will be judged; and Paul preserved with the Lord’s help to present this message to the Gentile world.
*Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me: to preach to the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things. His intent was that now, through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers and authorities in the heavenly realms, according to his eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord. Eph 3:8-11 NIV
*in that they show the work of the Law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts alternately accusing or else defending them, on the day when, according to my gospel, God will judge the secrets of men through Christ Jesus. Ro 2:15-16 NASB+
God showed Paul the heavenly realms, was the 1st person God brought into 3rd Heaven (1.a); showed Paul things he was not allowed to tell anyone else. Helped him understand the heavenly realms and the spiritual battle going on there; satan and his demons who are our greatest enemy in becoming, remaining children of our great God.
* I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows. And I know that this man was caught up into paradise—whether in the body or out of the body I do not know, God knows— and he heard things that cannot be told, which man may not utter. 2Co 12:2-4 ESV+ Paul talking about himself so not to boast.
*For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Eph 6:12 NIV+
Copyright 2017, edited 2019, edited 2020 by Ron Borkey
+ ESV “Scripture quotations marked [ESV] are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version,” copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good New Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.”
+ NEW AMERICAN STANDARD
BIBLE (1995 Update) Copyright © 1981, 1998 The Lockman Foundation, A Corporation Not for Profit,
+ NIV Scripture taken from the HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®. Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 International Bible Society. Used by permission of Zondervan. All rights reserved.
+ NKJV "Scripture taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. Used by permission. All rights reserved."
Some words in the verses from these Bibles may be emphasized with bold letters.