April 17, 2023 – Monday
Acts 14:1 NIV
1 At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue. There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Greeks believed.
Acts 14:1 NASB
1 In Iconium they entered the synagogue of the Jews together, and spoke in such a way that a large number of people believed, both of Jews and of Greeks.
Acts 14:1 BLB
1 Now it came to pass in Iconium, according to the same, they entered into the synagogue of the Jews and spoke so that a great number of both Jewish and Greeks believed
Acts 14:1 LSV
1 And it came to pass in Iconium, that they entered together into the synagogue of the Jews, and spoke, so that there believed a great multitude of both Jews and Greeks;
Four versions are above for you to consider. The NIV was the only version to add so effectively. The NASB, the ESV, and the NET were very similar and added in such a way to the verse. Both the Berean Literal Bible (BLB) and the Literal Standard Version simply say they, Paul and Barnabas, spoke. No matter which version you use, the result was a great number or a large number or a great multitude of both Jews and Greeks believed!
Why do you think so many versions added they spoke in such a way instead of simply they spoke? I get it, we have an innate belief that for something like this to happen they had to have spoken with great force or passion or both or so effectively that their words via their oratorical skill was so great people were convicted and almost had to believe.
Or was it something else? Romans 10:17 points in another direction as it says, 17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ. The word of God is powerful in its own right. Spoken clearly and honestly, it is often more than enough to bring someone to the faith. Consider Romans 1:16, 16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile. And in the Parable of the Sower, Jesus concludes with Mark 8:15, 15 But the seed on good soil stands for those with a noble and good heart, who hear the word, retain it, and by persevering produce a crop.
Paul and Barnabas were only interested in sharing the Good News of Jesus the Christ, the Risen Messiah. For those who were ready to receive the word of God the transformations were almost unbelievable. Paul even rebuked the Galatians who were drifting away from the word when he wrote in Galatians 3:2, 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? And again, –*in verse 5, 5 So again I ask, does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?
Whether you are hearing the word of God by the spoken word or reading it from the Bible it is important to put the words into action to avoid God’s judgment as He told Ezekiel in 33:30-32, 30 “As for you, son of man, your people are talking together about you by the walls and at the doors of the houses, saying to each other, ‘Come and hear the message that has come from the Lord.’ 31 My people come to you, as they usually do, and sit before you to hear your words, but they do not put them into practice. Their mouths speak of love, but their hearts are greedy for unjust gain. 32 Indeed, to them you are nothing more than one who sings love songs with a beautiful voice and plays an instrument well, for they hear your words but do not put them into practice.
Bottom Line: Hear God’s word at church and in your Bible reading, Then put His words into action in your life and your interactions with others.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for the Good News and the Bible which contains it. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton