After this we packed our things and left for Jerusalem. Some believers from Caesarea accompanied us, and they took us to the home of Mnason, a man originally from Cyprus and one of the early believers. When we arrived, the brothers and sisters in Jerusalem welcomed us warmly. The next day Paul went with us to meet with James, and all the elders of the Jerusalem church were present. After greeting them, Paul gave a detailed account of the things God had accomplished among the Gentiles through his ministry. (Acts of the Apostles 21:15-19 NLT)
Paul, his ministry team, and some believers from Caesarea traveled to Jerusalem. After arriving, they were taken to the home of an early ministry believer named Mnason. He was originally from Cyprus (the island out in the Mediterranean Sea just west and North of Israel) where Paul, Barnabas, and John Mark started their first missionary journey. There, they were welcomed by the local believers with warm hospitality.
The next day Paul, and his ministry team, went to meet with James. All of the other church leaders came to hear Paul's account. James was the Pastor in Jerusalem (See the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15). James was considered as the main overseer of the churches collectively. Paul submitted himself to this authority. Oh how we need to learn this respect in our time. God is pleased when we honor His anointed and appointed overseers. No matter how well known or popular someone is, they are never outside the boundary of accountability and submission to authority. Submission to authority and accountability to those over us is an honorable, healthy thing. (See Hebrews 13:7 and 17; I Thessalonians 5:12 and 13). Although Paul was a prominent figure in the early church, he was not the overseeing Pastor, James was. The home church, Jerusalem (see Acts chapters 2-8) was the highest point of authority within the church. Of course we all should know, and recognize, that God is the Ultimate Authority. He has, however, established His church with certain authorities within. This must be respected if we expect to honor God and gain His blessing. God blesses His order (I Corinthians 14:40).
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Rev. Curtis Norris