In our sermon study last week we
unpacked the amazing story of the
conversion that was experienced by
the young Pharisee named Saul as it
is recorded in Acts 9. In this story
we find the dramatic contrasts in the
life of someone before they met
Jesus compared to their life after
they had been transformed by the
Power of Divine love and grace. ‘Saul the persecutor
of the Christians’ became ‘Paul the Champion for

Throughout our series in the Book of Acts we have
progressed in an organized manner taking the narrative
as it is presented in consecutive order, chapter
by chapter. However, this week it seems that the
Damascus Road story of Saul calls for a bit more
attention. Luke placed this story in the context of
events following the Stoning of Stephen. As a principal
figure in that murder, the story of Saul coming
face-to-face with Jesus seems well-placed.

It is interesting that this same story appears in Acts
in three different settings. It is first told in Chapter 9
as a current event involving Saul and his companions
along with a disciple in Damascus named
Ananias who facilitated Saul’s healing, repentance
and baptism. The 2nd telling is recorded in Chapter
22 following Saul’s arrest by a crowd of Jews who
were angry because they thought he had brought an
Ephesian man (a Gentile) into the temple. When he
appeared before the Sanhedrin, Paul shared this
story of his transition from Pharisee to Apostle as his

The 3rd time that this story appears is in Chapter 26
as, once again, Paul finds himself in a series of trials
beginning with the Jewish religious leaders, then on
to Governor Felix in Caesarea, followed by a transfer
to Festus, the Roman governor of Judea, then on to
Rome where he mounts his final defense before King
Agrippa. Throughout this ordeal, Paul remained a
prisoner of those who wanted him to die, yet he was
protected by God as he continued to preach the
Gospel everywhere he went.

There were years between the events in Chapter 9
and those in Chapter 22. As we read the intervening
chapters we will find that ‘Paul the Apostle’ was very
active in his travels throughout much of the then
known world. He preached, he planted churches, he
trained leaders and he wrote some 14 of the 27
books of the New Testament. He rises as one who
has provided the greatest guidance for the church.
He was willing to embrace the mission of Jesus and
His impact on Christianity is profound.

Pastor Phil