Third Missionary Journey

Study Guide

During Paul’s third missionary journey, God uses good leadership, miracles, and disruption to advance his kingdom. In his mercy, God meets the Ephesians where they are. Some receive the gospel, others reject it, and the mission moves forward.
  1. When the leaders of the church at Ephesus see Apollos’ ignorance, they move towards him in order to bring clarity and truth. Has anyone ever filled that gap for you? How did it affect you? What steps do you need to take in order to be that type of leader for others?

  2. Often, we are more interested in tapping into God’s power for our own purposes than in aligning ourselves with his mission. Can you think of a time when you appealed to God for something you wanted that wasn’t necessarily part of his plan? How can you submit your plans to God’s power?

  3. When God disrupts our lives, we can either surrender to him and his lordship, or we can fight back. How do you tend to respond when your idols are threatened? What is God calling you to destroy so that you can give him all your worship? 

Key Points
  • Apollos receives correction well, and it is to his credit that he is willing to move with the insight he possesses. We need to be willing to move with the insight we have and trust God to give us what we need.

  • As Paul preaches the gospel at Ephesus, some receive the truth, and others reject it. If we ignore God’s revelation, over time, our hearts will become hardened to his truth.

  • God gives Paul extraordinary power to perform miracles. In this way, God speaks to the Ephesians in terms they understand and thus advances his kingdom.

  • God is the greatest version of what our souls deeply crave—power, significance, peace, comfort, etc.

  • Some of the Ephesians accept the gospel and burn their books on sorcery. Others reject God and incite a riot. You cannot become a worshiper of God without turning from the other things you worship.

  • Paul’s hope is not disrupted by the chaos around him. The world cannot compete with the hope we have within our souls.

Other Scripture References

Scripture: Acts 18-19