It was Saint Paul who said, “We should not be ignorant of the devices of the devil” in 2 Corinthians 2:11. One of such device is opposition. There are different kinds of oppositions, some are: subtle, whispering, deceitful, poisonous propaganda, while others are vicious and violent opposition; some spiritual while others are physical.
In chapters 13 &14 of Acts, Paul and Barnabas ministered in three different cities — Iconium, Lystra, and Derbe. The conditions were different in each city to which they came. In two of them, they met very vicious and violent opposition. It is instructive to see how they handled the challenges. In some cases, they escaped to other places and returned again.
In Acts 14:1-4, when Paul and Barnabas come to the city of Iconium: they employed the method used by the Apostles in Acts 4:25-31, when they were facing opposition and threats from the Jews, they prayed for grace and for the manifestation of the power of God. You spoke by the Holy Spirit through the mouth of Your servant, our father David: ‘Why do the nations rage and the peoples plot in vain? The kings of the earth rise up and the rulers band together against the Lord and against His anointed one. Indeed Herod and Pontius Pilate met together with the Gentiles and the people of Israel in this city to conspire against Your holy servant Jesus, whom You anointed. They did what Your power and will had decided before hand should happen. Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable Your servants to speak Your word with great boldness. Stretch out Your hand to heal and perform signs and wonders through the name of Your holy servant Jesus.” After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly.”
Acts 14:1-4 says, “At Iconium Paul and Barnabas went as usual into the Jewish synagogue. There they spoke so effectively that a great number of Jews and Greeks believed. But the Jews who refused to believe stirred up the other Gentiles and poisoned their minds against the brothers. So Paul and Barnabas spent considerable time there, speaking boldly for the Lord, who confirmed the message of His grace by enabling them to perform signs and wonders. The people of the city were divided; some sided with the Jews, others with the Apostles. ”
Apart from prayers, Saint Paul also made sure that there were some people in the city that were on his side. This is because if everyone in the city were against them, they may not survive it. We pray God to help us in Jesus Name…