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Summary: God’s missionary plan in action. (PowerPoint slides to accompany this talk are available on request - email:

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Reading: Acts 13 chapter 13 verses 1-12:


The Guide to Estate Agent Clichés

• “Would suit D-I-Y enthusiast” – MEANS - Would suit demolition

• “Bijou property” – MEANS - Microscopic

• “Convenient for motorway access” – MEANS - Triple-glazing a minimum

• “Efficient use of space” – MEANS - Cramped” doesn’t describe it

• “Incredible potential” – MEANS - Incredible cost to do up

• “Delightfully secluded” – MEANS - A week’s drive to the nearest shop

• “Up-and-coming-area” – MEANS - Expect to be mugged

• “Sought-after location” – MEANS - Flash post-code, inflated price

• “New price” – MEANS - On the market a year; not even a nibble

• “Deceptively spacious”: – MEANS - Guess who’s being deceptive


• People move house for a variety of reasons;

• For some it’s because of a new job.

• For others to be closer to family members.

• Some the need is for more space,

• Some fly the nest or move to a bigger place to accommodate a growing family.

• Or may be for less space as the offspring leave home.

• To some the move is to improve life - a better district, or to escape a tricky situation.

• There are many reasons both good and bad for moving.

Christians can add another key factor regarding moving - God.


• 24 years in the same house (even born there!),

• Then as I entered the ministry I had six different homes in two years.

We see this principle of God moving people:

• Perfectly illustrated in the book of Acts,

• Acts is a book of movement:

• It is a book of shallow tent pegs, as people are travelling here and there,

• Setting off in one direction or another in response to God’s call.


• William Phelps taught English literature at Yale for forty-one years;

• Until his retirement in 1933.

• One year just before Christmas he was marking an examination paper,

• Phelps came across the note: "God only knows the answer to this question. Merry Xmas"

• Phelps returned the paper with this note:

• "God gets an A. You get an F. Happy New Year."

• God alone knows where we might move to in the future,

• Wise people move with God, they do not fight against his will!

• Acts chapter 13 is a great example of;

• When God clearly says it is time to move on!

(1). Behind the Scenes: A Plan

• The book of Acts is one of the few Bible books,

• That first gives us the outline and then gives us the content.

The outline is in Acts chapter 1 verse 8:

“You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria,

and to the ends of the earth.”

• Jerusalem was where it all started,

• Sadly for many of the first Christians, that where it ended as well!

• That’s as far as God’s people went,

• They put their roots down and were content,

• So God had to send the stones of persecution into their calm waters

• And this persecution sent the Christians rippling outward;

• Into the second phase of God’s plan;

• Judea and Samaria.

• Yet here once again the Christians seem to have got themselves settled,

• They seemed to have forgotten the last part of Jesus’ command:

“And even to the remotest part of the earth”

Certainly, we can understand their desire to stay settled,

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