Read Acts 9:26-31
After fleeing Damascus where the Jews had tried to kill him, Saul came to Jerusalem and “tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him”. Why would the disciples in Jerusalem would have been afraid of Saul?
It is interesting how the text tells us Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. We are not given a lot of details. Did they know each other personally previously? That seems doubtful given Paul’s past. It says “they were all afraid of him”, but evidently Barnabas was not! Had he been in Damascus and witnessed Paul’s transformation?
We were introduced to Barnabas earlier in Acts 4:36-37. What was his other name? Where did he get the name “Barnabas” and what did it mean? How might this help us understand the actions of Barnabas in Acts 9?
I suppose it took courage to stand up for Paul. Everyone was afraid and it sounds like unwilling to give him a chance. How might “son of encouragement” be the kind of person who would stand up for someone everyone was afraid of and say, “let’s give him a chance!”
Please share your thoughts below and add any additional thoughts about this first part of the story of Paul and Barnabas.
We will review Paul’s friendship with Barnabas in our Zoom / Facebook Live class Wednesday night.