Recounts the story of the early church from the time of Jesus' ascension to Paul's arrival as a prisoner in Rome.

Early Christian Missions

Early Christian mission
according to Acts

Acts was written by the author of Luke's gospel.  The outline is indicated by Jesus' command that his disciples bear witness to him in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth (1:8).

Acts 1-12 recounts the disciples' witness in Jerusalem, Judea, and Samaria. After Jesus' ascension, the Holy Spirit descends upon the disciples at Pentecost. They are able to speak in other languages, although some bystanders think they are "filled with new wine." Peter heals a lame man at the Beautiful Gate in the Temple, but he is arrested for proclaiming salvation in Jesus Christ. Opposition increases and Stephen becomes the first Christian martyr.  After this the gospel moves outward when Philip bears witness in Samaria to the north and to an Ethiopian heading south. Paul's encounter with the risen Christ and Peter's vision signal the beginning of mission to the Gentile world.

Acts 13-28 recounts Paul's missionary journeys.  Paul embarks on several missionary journeys. The first is from Antioch to Cyprus and parts of Asia Minor, where Paul and Barnabas establish Christian congregations despite opposition. At Lystra Paul heals a lame man and people think that he is a god. A conference in Jerusalem determines that Gentile converts to Christianity do not need to follow the Jewish practice of circumcision. Paul continues founding congregations in Asia Minor and Greece. In Philippi he is briefly imprisoned after casting out a demon from a slave girl. In Athens he sees an altar "to an unknown God," and proclaims that God is made known through Christ. Upon returning to Jerusalem, Paul is arrested, imprisoned at Caesarea, and appeals his case to the emperor. Although shipwrecked on the voyage, he arrives in Rome and continues teaching and preaching while awaiting his hearing.

Acts 1:6-8 - Jesus commissions the disciples
Acts 2:1-42 - Coming of the Holy Spirit
Acts 9:1-19 - Paul's conversion
Acts 15:1-21 - Jerusalem conference
Acts 28:11-31 - Paul in Rome

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