Now they which were scattered abroad upon the persecution that arose about Stephen travelled as far as Phenice, and Cyprus, and Antioch, preaching the word to none but unto the Jews only. And some of them were men of Cyprus and Cyrene, which, when they were come to Antioch, spake unto the Grecians, preaching the Lord Jesus. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord. Acts 11:19-21
The stoning of Stephen began the great persecution of the Church, however God used this evil for his good, as the Christians scattered to other regions, the gospel of Christ began to spread from them. This began to grow more Christians, as it said “A great number believed”
Also remember Peter’s vision and the Holy Spirit fell upon the Gentiles. Now we are starting to see the Church truly take its form, people from all different countries and races becoming children of God through the Lord Jesus Christ! This is the New Covenant, this is the Church of God
Then tidings of these things came unto the ears of the church which was in Jerusalem: and they sent forth Barnabas, that he should go as far as Antioch. Who, when he came, and had seen the grace of God, was glad, and exhorted them all, that with purpose of heart they would cleave unto the Lord. For he was a good man, and full of the Holy Ghost and of faith: and much people was added unto the Lord. Acts 11:22-24
So many people were coming to Christ that the news spread all the way to Jerusalem. The Church then decided to send Barnabas to see what was going on. Notice it says “Many people were added to The Lord” See what was meant for our harm, God used it for our good. (Romans 8:28) The Church was growing under persecution
We see this throughout history, the more the Church is persecuted , the stronger the Church actually grows. Satan has been trying to destroy Christianity since the beginning, but doesnt realize Christ has crushed the head of the serpent at the cross! As Jesus said “The gates of hell will not prevail against the Church” (Matthew 16:18)
Jesus commanded us the Great Commission to preach the gospel to everyone! Don’t be afraid, God is with you and the gates of Hell won’t prevail against you in Jesus Name Amen!