Posted: 13.06.20 at 17:39 by Andrew Coulson
Bible Reading - Acts 4: 33 – 36
And with great power the apostles gave witness to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And great grace was upon them all.
Nor was there anyone among them who lacked; for all who were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the proceeds of the things that were sold, and laid them at the apostles’ feet; and they distributed to each as anyone had need.
And Joses, who was also named Barnabas by the apostles (which is translated Son of Encouragement), a Levite of the country of Cyprus,
I am not a great follower of Saints days but noticed that on Thursday (June 11) it was dedicated to St Barnabas. So who is Barnabas? I hear you ask. Well, he was an apostle in the early church.
The above reading is the first mention of Barnabas in the Bible but he does appear again on a number of occasions and is probably best known for accompanying St Paul on his travels.
The important thing from the reading is not that he sold property and gave away the money from that sale but that, whilst he was born on Cyprus and had the name Joseph, he became known as Barnabas or “son of encouragement”.
God drew Barnabas to people who needed encouragement and he responded to that call.
During this difficult time of lockdown we may have received encouragement from, or given encouragement to, others. People need encouragement most when they are alone and feel isolated.
We may have responded to peoples’ needs, and to God’s call, to encourage others in recent weeks but when lockdown ends will we simply return to our old ways, or will we continue as Sons, or Daughters, of Encouragement?