The apostles in Jerusalem accept Paul
1 14 years later, I went to Jerusalem again. This time I went with Barnabas, and I also took Titus with me. 2 I went there because God had shown me that I should go. I talked to the Christian leaders there. I explained to them the good news that I teach to the Gentiles. But I talked only to those men who seemed to be the leaders. I wanted to be sure that they agreed with the message that I taught. I did not want my work, both in past times and now, to be worth nothing. 3 Titus was with me then. He is a Greek person and nobody had circumcised him. But the leaders in Jerusalem did not say that we must circumcise him.
2:3Titus was not a Jew, and nobody had ever circumcised him. Some Jewish Christians said that all believers must be circumcised. But the apostles in Jerusalem did not say that this must happen.
4 But some men did want us to obey all the Jewish rules. Those men came secretly among our group. They said that they were believers, but they were not really true believers. They wanted to see how we lived as believers. They wanted to know how Christ Jesus has made us free from the Jewish rules. They wanted to make us slaves to those rules. 5 But we did not agree at all with what those men wanted us to do. They wanted to spoil the true good news that you have believed. We kept the good news safe for you.
6 The church leaders in Jerusalem did not argue with me. (They were the people who seemed to be the leaders. It does not matter to me whether they were really important people or not. God does not respect some people more than others.) Those leaders did not tell me to change the message that I teach. 7 Instead they saw that God had given a special job to me. God wanted me to tell the good news about Christ to the Gentiles. In the same way, he had told Peter to tell the good news to the Jews. 8 God gave Peter the authority to be his apostle to the Jews. God also gave me the authority to be his apostle to the Gentiles.
9 James, Peter and John, understood that God had given this special job to me. They are the leaders that the church in Jerusalem respects. And they were happy to accept Barnabas and me as their friends. They agreed that we should teach God's message to the Gentiles. They themselves would continue to teach the Jews. 10 They only asked us to do this: We should remember to help the poor people among their group. That is something that I myself wanted very much to do.