LINK: Galatians 2:1-10
The critics of Paul accused him of being a lone-ranger who did not confer with the other Apostles. In this passage, Paul emphasizes that all his actions were endorsed by the leaders in Jerusalem. Most commentators believe Paul is referring to the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15. Paul says that even Titus, a Gentile believer, did not see it necessary to be circumcised since this was one of the main reasons there was a council in Acts 15. The main point of the Jerusalem Council was to cement that Jews and Gentiles were saved by faith in Jesus Christ alone and did not need to be circumcised!
Some believe that Paul is referring to the "famine visit" in Acts 11:27-30 because Paul mentions that the leaders in Jerusalem had one request: remember the poor (2:10).
Paul was not a lone-ranger, and we should not be either. We need to be in community as we do ministry and make decisions.
Yesterday, one of the single women I meet with Skyped me to tell me that the guy she had been "hanging out with" had asked her if they could look into being more than friends. She had not thought that she should be more than friends prior to this and was planning on telling him so when he beat her to it. When he asked her, instead of saying, "No!" She said, "I cannot answer you right now, I need to pray about it and talk to my community first."
Then, she called two of her close friends (a "clearness committee" of sorts), and they prayed and sought to listen to what God said about it. She was surprised to hear God telling her to explore this relationship! (She had been dead-set against it when I met with her three days before.)
She doesn't know if it will lead toward marriage, but she felt God was pleased with it and would lead the two of them every step of the way, regardless of where it eventually would lead. He is a man of immensely good character and will be very careful with her. I think that is very healthy!
I said, "Amen to that!"
Update 2015: She was over last night and has been happily married to him since December 2014!
Do you make decisions apart from the community that holds you accountable? Do you even have a community that holds you accountable?
Lord, I praise You that You have given us the body of Christ! Help us to not be lone-rangers! Amen.