Author: Ron Graham

Book of Acts

Acts 13:43-52
—Verse by verse

This page is a verse by verse study of Acts 13:43-52. These verses describe how Paul and Barnabas are persecuted in Antioch Pisidia, and driven out of the city.

Paul and Barnabas Persecuted in Antioch Pisidia

Acts 13:43-52

¶“43Now when the synagogue meeting broke up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas. So Paul and Barnabas spoke to them, urging them to continue in the grace of God. 44The next Sabbath almost the whole city was gathered together to hear the word of God. 45But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with jealousy, and contradicted the things which were spoken by Paul, and blasphemed.” (Acts 13:43-45).

¶“46Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, and said, 'It was necessary that God’s word should be spoken to you first. But since indeed you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. 47For so has the Lord commanded us, saying, 'I have set you as a light for the Gentiles, that you should bring salvation to the uttermost parts of the earth.' ' ” (Acts 13:46-47).

¶“48As the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of God. As many as were designated for eternal life believed. 49The word of the Lord was spread abroad throughout all the region.” (Acts 13:48-49).

¶“50However, the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the chief men of the city, and stirred up a persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and threw them out of their borders. 51But Paul and Barnabas shook off the dust from their feet against them, and came to Iconium. 52The disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” (Acts 13:50-52).

1 Jews Reject Paul’s Ministry

Verses 43-45

¶ "Now when the synagogue meeting broke up, many of the Jews and devout proselytes followed Paul and Barnabas. So Paul and Barnabas spoke to them, urging them to continue in the grace of God. The next Sabbath almost the whole city was gathered together to hear the word of God. But when the Jews saw the multitudes, they were filled with jealousy, and contradicted the things which were spoken by Paul, and blasphemed." (Acts 13:43-45).

2 Paul Turns to the Gentiles

Verses 46-47

¶ "Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, and said, “It was necessary that God’s word should be spoken to you first. But since indeed you thrust it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we turn to the Gentiles. For so has the Lord commanded us, saying, ‘I have set you as a light for the Gentiles, that you should bring salvation to the uttermost parts of the earth.’ ” " (Acts 13:46-47).

3 Gentiles Welcome Paul’s Message

Verses 48-49

¶ "As the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the word of God. As many as were designated for eternal life believed. The word of the Lord was spread abroad throughout all the region." (Acts 13:48-49).

Appointed to Eternal Life

Special attention needs to be given to the use of tasso in Acts 13:48 by comparison with 1Corinthians 16:15. In the latter passage, the household of Stephanas devoted themselves for ministry. In Acts 13:48 certain Gentiles at Antioch in Pisidia believed Paul’s preaching because they had been devoted to eternal life. God fearing people, they were determined to seek light and salvation. Thus disposed, they were designated for eternal life, unlike those who had rejected the gospel, to whom Paul said, "You judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life" (Acts 13:46).

Some would falsely say that those who believed were “indisposed” to eternal life by their “total depravity and inability” to receive the gospel. Nevertheless they had been, before the foundation of the world, “predestinated and foreordained” to eternal life. Therefore the Holy Spirit by “irresistable grace” moved them to believe, against every inclination of their “sinful nature”.

I leave it to you to compare that interpretation with what I have said above, and make up your own mind.

Verses 50-52

¶ "However, the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the chief men of the city, and stirred up a persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and threw them out of their borders. But Paul and Barnabas shook off the dust from their feet against them, and came to Iconium. The disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit." (Acts 13:50-52).

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