I have been privileged to travel overseas on short term mission with Evangelism Explosion (EE). One of my joys has been to develop and retain cross-cultural friendships with Christians in Fiji and Vanuatu. It is great to see Jesus in other people who speak another language, look slightly different to me and live with different cultural practices. It is comforting to know that Jesus has brought us together, both socially through ministry and supernaturally in the bond of fellowship that transcends cultural differences (cf. Galatians 3).
In this part of the Acts narrative Paul is travelling around with a bunch of delegates from the regions that he has visited. Possibly they are there to witness and report back on the appropriation of donations received for the Judeans. Presumably they can give testimony about Paul’s ministry to new audiences along the way. Furthermore, as seven men from three geographic regions they also bear witness in themselves to God’s work of building a community of diversity. Wouldn’t it be good for new believers to be surprised at the diversity among us? Imagine if reformed criminals broke bread with retired justice professionals in our local Christian community. That may be just as unnatural as a man being raised from the dead.