An example of how to receive a vision and operate after

---By CK Jen, 2020/05/08

After the resurrection and ascension of the Lord Jesus in the New Testament, Book of Acts told and recorded His heart desires (that are, the visions and revelations given to us in the Bible) to lead apostles to different cities (the churches) and how they obeyed the Lord (indeed went through many difficulties and hardships, and even risked losing their lives) and operated. In the beginning at Acts 1: 8, the Lord commanded the apostles (including us in the present) through the Holy Spirit that they would go to the utmost of the world (the whole earth; the whole mankind) to be His witnesses.

Acts 1: 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.

In the first trip of the apostle Paul, he had already visited some cities in the provinces of Asia and Galatia together with brother Barnabas (please refer to Acts 13 - 15). Probably, because of the time constraints, in Act 16: 9 -10 The Lord showed a vision to the apostle Paul, leading brother Paul, brother Silas, brother Timothy and brother Luke to go to Macedonia, Europe, to preach the gospel first.

Acts 16: 8 passing by Mysia, they went down to Troas.

Acts 16: 9 A vision appeared to Paul in the night: a man of Macedonia was standing there, urging him and saying, "Come over to Macedonia and help us."

Acts 16: 10 And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.

Why did Paul, Brother Silas and Timothy desire to go to Asia? Perhaps the following verses can be used for reference:

Acts 14:22 Strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith , and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.

Acts 16:6 They went through the region of Phrygia and Galatia , having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia.

They would like to strengthen the disciples whom previously were contacted by apostle Paul and brother Barnabas during the last gospel preaching trip. But the Holy Spirit prohibited them from preaching in Asia this time at Acts 16: 6 in order to lead them to Macedonia, Europe.

Phrygia (please see the map at the back of the Bible) is on the east side of Mysia. Paul and Silas might not have been there to preach the gospel. The area is relatively remote. Brother Paul's team including brother Timothy seemed to be willing to suffer (hardships) to go there to preach the gospel, but the spirit of Jesus (this spirit symbolizes Jesus'suffering) did not allow, because the Lord needed them to go to Europe to preach the gospel at that time. Acts 14:22b tells that there will be many hardships in preaching the gospel. However, Acts 16: 7 indicates, at the border of Mysia, they wanted to go to Phrygia to preach the gospel, but the spirit of Jesus did not allow it.

The Lord did not send Paul's team to Asia and Mysia or Bythinia to preach the gospel, because He probably wanted His saints in Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch to carry out such operations. The Lord desired to send Paul's team to Europe first due to, probably, the considerations of His timing.

Acts 14:20b and on the next day he went on with Barnabas to Derbe.

Acts 14:21 When they had preached the gospel to that city and had made many disciples, they returned to Lystra and to Iconium and to Antioch.

Acts 14:22 strengthening the souls of the disciples, encouraging them to continue in the faith, and saying that through many tribulations we must enter the kingdom of God.

Acts 14:23 And when they had appointed elders for them in every church, with prayer and fasting they committed them to the Lord in whom they had believed.

Acts 16: 6.7 indicate clearly that Paul, Silas and Timothy are very sensitive to spiritual leading of the Lord. It also means that they exercise their spirit very much in their living. Probably because of this, the vision was willing to be shown to the apostle Paul in Acts 16: 9 (so in daily life, we need to exercise our spirit constantly). The following was what Paul's operation (which is very much worthy of our study) after he received the vision in Acts 16:9.

Acts 16:10 And when Paul had seen the vision, immediately we sought to go on into Macedonia, concluding (Greek 4822; King James version assuredly gathering) that God had called us to preach the gospel to them.

Ephesians 4:16from whom the whole body, joined and held together (Greek 4822 ) by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

Colossians 2:2 that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together (Greek 4822) in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, Colossians 2:19 and not holding fast to the Head, from whom the whole body, nourished and knit together (Greek 4822) through its joints and ligaments, grows with a growth that is from God.

Paul was a matured brother in the Lord at that time and had received a vision alone from the Lord (Acts 16: 9), but he did not make a decision on his own immediately, rather instead fellowshipped with other brothers, including Silas (Acts 16:19), young Timothy (~ 22 years old), and Luke (seems to have just joined Paul's team; Acts 16: 8,10,11). Finally, the Bible used Greek word (Greek 4822 sumbibazÕ ) in Acts 16:10 to indicated that their fellowship was concluded in the oneness of the organic life in the Lord, and then together made the decision and acted.

These bible verses can be used to show how we can receive a vision from the Lord (our spirit needs to be sensitive to the leading of the Lord) and fellowship closely with spiritual companions, spiritual teams, or saints after having received the vision in order to reach the oneness in the Lord, and then operate together.

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