“Be Strong and of Good Courage”

21 February 10


  1. Introduction:

·      Josh 1:9

“Be strong and of good courage”

·      Every person needs courage to face challenges of advancing the Kingdom of God

·      Courage = internal strength and resolve that enables a person to face difficulty, danger, conflict, uncertainty and pain, bravely overcoming fear and doubt

·      It is easy to be overwhelmed by loneliness, doubt, misunderstanding – we all need encouraging

·      Great ministry all may have – encouragement = inspire others with courage and confidence

·      Personally responsible to encourage self eg 1 Sam 30:6; 2 Tim 4:16

·      Great men had others who encouraged them eg 1 Sam 23:16 Jonathan

·      Heb 3:12-13  Encourage one another daily – ministry for all


  1. Barnabas – Apostle of Encouragement:

·       Barnabas stands out in NT as a man who encouraged others

·       He encouraged others to discover and fulfill the call of God on their life

·       He is an example of a man of Great Grace who empowered others = key influence in Paul’s life

·      Key aspects of Barnabas:

Acts 4:33-37

Name = Joses = Joseph = He will add, He will increase

Renamed Barnabas

i)        Bar = Ben = Son, builder of the house hold

ii)   Nabas = Consolation, encouragement, inspire, prophetic

In the midst of the great grace season, Barnabas stood out – great grace upon him


a)  Generosity

Act 4:37  “having land, sold it and brought money and laid it at the Apostles feet”

·         He was generous with his resources – tender heart for people, especially the poor

·         Generosity ministers encouragement  to others

·         Foundational to his life – spirit of giving and generosity

Encouragement, words, prophetic, finances

·         His generosity was without any strings attached


b)  Sees Potential, beyond history - destiny

Act 9:26  “Barnabas took Paul and brought him to the Apostles”

·         People were full of fear of Paul

·         Paul –persecutor of Church – consented to Stephen’s death

·         Barnabas took great personal risk to bring Paul to the Apostles

·         Risk of loss of position and influence, even  loss of his own life

·         Recognise the hand of God upon him – saw destiny not history






c)  Makes room for the gifts of others

Act 11:22-26  Departed from Tarsus to seek Paul

·         Barnabas moved and flowed in great grace – this impacted Antioch

·         He recognized the gifts and call on Paul and made effort to include him

·         Encourage and made effort to include diversity/difference


d)  Encourage people in their calling

·         Act 13:1-4  ‘Separate me now’  Barnabas and Saul

·         Barnabas operated in encouragement and grace

·         He encouraged and mentored Paul in early ministry

·         Paul a great legalist became an apostle of grace

·         Impartation of grace from Barnabas to Paul

·         Paul emerges with a greater gifting – no threat to Barnabas


e)  Stands alongside in conflict

·         Act 15:12-13  Barnabas and Paul declaring how many miracles and wonders God had worked through them

·         Barnabas used his reputation and standing to support Paul’s ministry overcoming opposition of legalism


f)     Stays true to own self

·         Act 15:36-40

·         Barnabas was an encourager, Paul a pioneer

·         Barnabas stayed true to his own calling, believing in young John Mark who had failed

·         He stand by a failed person to see them restored

·         His encouragement restores John Mark  to minister 2 Tim 4:11


All great men have those alongside who believe in them and encourage them

Will you be an encourager?

Who? What will you do? Presence? Words? Actions? Giftings?