Paul said no (Acts 15:38)

“But Paul decided

Not to take John Mark

With them.

He had deserted them

In Pamphylia.

He did not accompany them

In their work.”

Παῦλος δὲ ἠξίου, τὸν ἀποστάντα ἀπ’ αὐτῶν ἀπὸ Παμφυλίας καὶ μὴ συνελθόντα αὐτοῖς εἰς τὸ ἔργον, μὴ συνπαραλαμβάνειν τοῦτον.

The author of Acts indicated that Paul (Παῦλος δὲ) decided (ἠξίου) not to take John Mark with them (μὴ συνπαραλαμβάνειν τοῦτον).  He had deserted them (τὸν ἀποστάντα ἀπ’ αὐτῶν) in Pamphylia (ἀπὸ Παμφυλίας), since he did not accompany them (καὶ μὴ συνελθόντα αὐτοῖς) in their work (εἰς τὸ ἔργον) in Asia Minor.  This was a reference to their first trip when John Mark left Barnabas and Paul in Pamphylia in chapter 13:13, “John (Ἰωάνης) left them (δὲ ἀποχωρήσας ἀπ’ αὐτῶν) to return (ὑπέστρεψεν) to Jerusalem (εἰς Ἱεροσόλυμα).”  John Mark had left Paul and Barnabas, but it is not clear why he left and went back to Jerusalem.  Perhaps he may have gone to see his mother.  Clearly, Paul remembered this incident.  He believed that John Mark had abandoned them after they left Cyprus, since he was not willing to go and do the missionary activities in Pamphylia and the other areas of Asia Minor.  The people there would not have recognized John Mark, since they had not seen or heard of him before this trip.  Paul clearly did not want him to come on this second trip.  Would you want to bring someone on a trip who left you the last time you went with them?

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