Acts 11:25

To seek for Saul (anazhthsai Saulon). First aorist (effective) active infinitive of purpose. Anazhtew is a common verb since Plato, but in the N.T. only here and Luke 2:44 Luke 2:45 , to seek up and down (ana), back and forth, to hunt up, to make a thorough search till success comes. It is plain from Galatians 1:21 that Saul had not been idle in Cilicia. Tarsus was not very far from Antioch. Barnabas probably knew that Saul was a vessel of choice ( Acts 9:15 ) by Christ for the work among the Gentiles. He knew, of course, of Saul's work with the Hellenists in Jerusalem ( Acts 9:29 ) and echoes of his work in Cilicia and Syria had probably come to him. So to Tarsus he goes when he saw the need for help. "He had none of the littleness which cannot bear the presence of a possible rival" (Furneaux). Barnabas knew his own limitations and knew where the man of destiny for this crisis was, the man who already had the seal of God upon him. The hour and the man met when Barnabas brought Saul to Antioch. The door was open and the man was ready, far more ready than when Jesus called him on the road to Damascus. The years in Cilicia and Syria were not wasted for they had not been idle. If we only knew the facts, it is probable that Saul also had been preaching to Hellenes as well as to Hellenists. Jesus had definitely called him to work among the Gentiles ( Acts 9:15 ). In his own way he had come to the same place that Peter reached in Caesarea and that Barnabas now holds in Antioch. God always has a man prepared for a great emergency in the kingdom. The call of Barnabas was simply the repetition of the call of Christ. So Saul came.