Second Missionary Journey



There is no record that God told Paul or Barnabas to go on this second journey.  I believe God did ordain and command this journey, as he blessed it with the spreading of the gospel throughout many more places than on the first journey.  Paul and Barnabas had already been separated to the work in Acts 13. This journey is simply a continuation of that “separation”.  Paul and Silas, as stated in Acts 15:40 began their journey with Silas being recommended unto the grace of God, exactly like Paul and Barnabas were recommended on their first journey.

Acts 16:1-3 – Paul circumcised Timothy so he would not be an offence in declaring the gospel to the Jews in that area.  Compare to Galatians 2:1-5 where Paul refused to circumcise Titus because there were unbelieving Jews in that place who taught that unless you were circumcised according to the Law of Moses, you could not be saved.   While some may think Paul was inconsistent, he was perfectly consistent to refuse to baptize Titus.  If he had baptized Titus, the unbelievers would be able to say Paul believed circumcision (and the keeping of the law) was necessary to salvation.  When Paul consented to the circumcision of Timothy, he did that so the unbelieving Jews would listen to the gospel message.  With the unbelievers at Galatia, they had already heard and rejected the message of trusting Christ for salvation. They believed in trusting Christ plus circumcision for salvation.

Acts 16:6-8 – I believe the common practice of Paul and Barnabas on the first journey continues with Paul and Silas on this second journey.  They continually pray for the leadership of God in understanding where to travel next.  They make no move before they know what God wants them to do.  So it should be with us.  It is not wrong to do nothing if God has not told you what to do, or where to go.  Men may put a lot of pressure on you to do something, to get on with your ministry, but any move without the explicit approval of God will be wrong, and the consequences will be seen sooner or later.  It is amazing that Paul and Silas were forbidden of the Holy Ghost to preach the gospel in Asia, even though they passed through that land, Acts 16:6.