And Joses, who was also named Barnabas by the apostles (which is translated Son of Encouragement), a Levite of the country of Cyprus. Acts 4:36
We often hear someone referred to as “a good person,” and we aren’t quite sure what is meant. Are they nice? Moral? A doer of good deeds? Possibly all might apply. There was a man in the Early Church who was called “a good man,” but that label is further defined: He was “full of the Holy Spirit and of faith.” The man’s name was Barnabas (Acts 11:22-24).
Actually, Barnabas was a nickname; his given name was Joses, or Joseph. The apostles gave him the name Barnabas, which meant “Son of Encouragement” (Acts 4:36). The word “encouragement” in Greek is paraklesis, similar to parakletos, the word Jesus used to describe the Holy Spirit—the One who would come to comfort, encourage, and help the disciples after Jesus’ departure (John 14:16, 26). So now we get a better idea of why Barnabas was thought of as a good man. He was a helper and encourager of others, full of faith and the Holy Spirit. It is hard to imagine anything more needed and more helpful in life than encouragement.
Be a good person in someone’s life today by encouraging them. As the Holy Spirit encourages you, encourage others.
The church should be a community of encouragement. Fred Catherwood