Spiritual Training

Spiritual Training X2

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October 16 - Evening

"Barnabas wanted to take John, also called Mark, with them, but Paul did not think it wise to take him, because he had deserted them in Pamphylia and had not continued with them in the work. They had such a sharp disagreement that they parted company. Barnabas took Mark and sailed for Cyprus, but Paul chose Silas and left, commended by the believers to the grace of the Lord." - Acts 15:37-40

Different Gifts with Different Callings Can See Conflicting Needs with Opposing Resolutions

When Paul and Barnabas left Antioch (in Syria) form their first missionary trip across the Island of Cyprus and then into Lycaonia and Galatia, they took John Mark along as a “helper.” (Acts 13:5) “Helper” is the translation of the Greek word “huperetes” which is made up of two Greek words: the first is the preposition “hupo-“ meaning “under” and the second, “eretes” means “rower” and is translated as “assistant,” “attendant,” “helper,” “minister,” and, even “officer.”
John Mark may have been taken along with Paul and Barnabas to serve as a first hand, eye-witness of Jesus' passion, death and resurrection. The Last Supper may have been held in the home of John Mark and his mother, Mary, which was where the early church met regularly as is seen in Acts 12:12 when Peter goes to join the church that was meeting in Mary's house when he is released from prison by an angel. John Mark may have followed Jesus and the disciples out to the Garden of Gethsemane on the night that Jesus was arrested and may have been the young man who is referred to in this account recorded by John Mark in his Gospel:
“Then everyone deserted him and fled. A young man, wearing nothing but a linen garment, was following Jesus. When they seized him, he fled naked, leaving his garment behind.” – Mark 14:50-52

On their first missionary trip Paul, Barnabas and John Mark made their way towards the treacherous country of Asia , Luke says that John Mark:
                “…left them to return to Jerusalem.” – Acts 13:13

The Greek phrase translated “left them” can mean “to depart" or "to desert.” In Acts 15:38, Paul labels John Mark’s actions on the coast of Asia as “deserted them.” So, when Barnabas, who is John Mark’s cousin (Colossians 4:10), desired to take John Mark along for the second missionary trip, Paul says, “No!” and, Barnabas says, “Absolutely, Yes!”
Luke says this resulted in “such a sharp disagreement” between Paul and Barnabas “that they parted company.” The phrase “sharp disagreement” is translated from “paroxysmos” which is used twice in the septuigint (LXX) to express “the furious anger” of God. The difference in opinion concerning John Mark might have been caused by the different perspectives and different callings God had given to Paul and Barnabas. Paul was called and gifted to take the message into the land of the foreign Gentiles where he would face unbelievable opposition. This is not a ministry for someone who is undecided and hesitant. Plus, it is a ministry that requires that the person be called and empowered by God. Someone could be hurt if they were counting on John Mark, who suddenly decided to turn and go home again. Paul made the right choice according to his gift.
But, Barnabas, whose name itself means “son of encouragement” was gifted and called to encourage people. Barnabas could help believers make their next step or find their next connection in their ministry. Barnabas did this for Paul twice. Once, when the Jerusalem church rejected Paul after his conversion (Acts 9:27), and then, again, when Barnabas went in search of Paul in the land of Cilicia because he felt Paul could benefit the Antioch church in Syria (Acts 11:25). So, what is a man like Barnabas going to do when he sees a young man like John Mark struggling to find his place in the ministry? Barnabas is going to take John Mark on a second missionary trip for a second try in the ministry every time. Barnabas also made the right choice according to his gift.
It is worth noting that this occurred in the year 49 AD, and 18 years later in 67 AD, Paul is in prison and needs a good scribe to help copy letters and take dictation for him, so Paul tells Timothy:
“Get Mark and bring him with you because he is helpful to me in my ministry.” – Second Timothy 4:11

Indeed, Mark was useful in the ministry! He traveled for several years with Peter serving as his scribe (First Peter 5:13) and writing Peter’s account of his days with Jesus and editing them into the book of Mark. Mark was not an apostle like Paul, nor was he the "son of encouragement" like his cousin Barnabas, but Mark was useful to both Peter and Paul, and to all the church, as a scribe, an editor and a writer.
Thalpo (Gr) - Riches (Eng) - the Greek word thalpo means "to warm," "to keep warm," "to cherish," "to cherish with tender love," "to nurse," "to foster with tender care."
Do I understand that at times people with different spiritual gifts and different callings will conflict?
Do I conflict with people in the church because of the ministry focus God has called me to?
I will recognize that different gifts have different focuses, so I will avoid conflict by continuing to use my gift while allowing other believers room to focus on God's call in their life.

Bible Reading Descriptions Here


(morning only)

Complete Text

General Text


Relaxation and refreshing


God's will be done
Russia - the religious freedom's window of opportunity appears to be closing.

Judean Hill Country
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Roman Road Construction
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Someone to Quote

"The Word of God well understood and religiously obeyed is the shortest route to spiritual perfection. And we must not select a few favorite passages to the exclusion of others. Nothing less than a whole Bible can make a whole Christian." - AW. Tozer

Something to Ponder

Three continents meet on the land bridge we call Israel. This means that throughout history Israel has always shared cultures, trade, languages, fauna, birds, animals.

Here’s a Fact

The Bible represents the most complete literary record we possess of ancient times. And, it has proven to be archaeologically accurate and very trustworthy when compared to other ancient literary sources.


"Whoever gives heed to instruction prospers, and blessed is he who trusts in the Lord." - Proverbs 16:20

Coach’s Corner

There is joy in being obedient. There is strength in righteousness. 

Galatians 5
New International Version (NIV)
Freedom in Christ
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.
Mark my words! I, Paul, tell you that if you let yourselves be circumcised, Christ will be of no value to you at all. Again I declare to every man who lets himself be circumcised that he is obligated to obey the whole law. You who are trying to be justified by the law have been alienated from Christ; you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit we eagerly await by faith the righteousness for which we hope. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision has any value. The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love.
You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the one who calls you. “A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” 10 I am confident in the Lord that you will take no other view. The one who is throwing you into confusion, whoever that may be, will have to pay the penalty. 11 Brothers and sisters, if I am still preaching circumcision, why am I still being persecuted? In that case the offense of the cross has been abolished. 12 As for those agitators, I wish they would go the whole way and emasculate themselves!
Life by the Spirit
13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” 15 If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
19 The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; 20 idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions 21 and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
Matthew 10
New International Version (NIV)
Jesus Sends Out the Twelve
10 Jesus called his twelve disciples to him and gave them authority to drive out impure spirits and to heal every disease and sickness.
These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel. As you go, proclaim this message: ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’ Heal the sick, raise the dead, cleanse those who have leprosy, drive out demons. Freely you have received; freely give.
“Do not get any gold or silver or copper to take with you in your belts— 10 no bag for the journey or extra shirt or sandals or a staff, for the worker is worth his keep. 11 Whatever town or village you enter, search there for some worthy person and stay at their house until you leave. 12 As you enter the home, give it your greeting. 13 If the home is deserving, let your peace rest on it; if it is not, let your peace return to you. 14 If anyone will not welcome you or listen to your words, leave that home or town and shake the dust off your feet. 15 Truly I tell you, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.
16 “I am sending you out like sheep among wolves. Therefore be as shrewd as snakes and as innocent as doves. 17 Be on your guard; you will be handed over to the local councils and be flogged in the synagogues. 18 On my account you will be brought before governors and kings as witnesses to them and to the Gentiles. 19 But when they arrest you, do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say, 20 for it will not be you speaking, but the Spirit of your Father speaking through you.
21 “Brother will betray brother to death, and a father his child; children will rebel against their parents and have them put to death. 22 You will be hated by everyone because of me, but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved. 23 When you are persecuted in one place, flee to another. Truly I tell you, you will not finish going through the towns of Israel before the Son of Man comes.
24 “The student is not above the teacher, nor a servant above his master. 25 It is enough for students to be like their teachers, and servants like their masters. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household!
26 “So do not be afraid of them, for there is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known. 27 What I tell you in the dark, speak in the daylight; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the roofs. 28 Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. 29 Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. 30 And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. 31 So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.
32 “Whoever acknowledges me before others, I will also acknowledge before my Father in heaven. 33 But whoever disowns me before others, I will disown before my Father in heaven.
34 “Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I have come to turn
“‘a man against his father,     a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
    a man’s enemies will be the members of his own household.’
37 “Anyone who loves their father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves their son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. 38 Whoever does not take up their cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39 Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.
40 “Anyone who welcomes you welcomes me, and anyone who welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. 41 Whoever welcomes a prophet as a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward, and whoever welcomes a righteous person as a righteous person will receive a righteous person’s reward. 42 And if anyone gives even a cup of cold water to one of these little ones who is my disciple, truly I tell you, that person will certainly not lose their reward.”

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