In Your Bible: Acts 9:1-19
The stunning record of Saul’s encounter on the road to Damascus may be the most famous conversion story in the New Testament. Saul had a “talking to” from the Lord Jesus Christ. God stopped Saul, humbled him, healed him, and then empowered him with a new task.
Damascus was a walk of at least 7 to 10 days from Jerusalem. The roadway was a famous trade route, with rest stops about 5-10 miles apart. Notably this walk would include a Sabbath with a day’s rest (since no work or walk a significant distance could be done on the Sabbath).
Finally, at mid-day, Saul was about to enter the city . . . Suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him; and he fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” And he said, “Who are You, Lord?” (Acts 9:4b-5a NASB). Saul fell to the ground in fear.
Immediately Saul heard the answer, “I am Jesus, the One you’re hunting down. I want you to get up and enter the city. . .” (Acts 9:6 Message). Saul could not see and was led to Damascus holding the hand of one travelling with him. Saul didn’t eat or drink for three days.
God’s Provision for Saul
Ananias, a devout believer, had a vision in which the Lord told him to go to Saul. He must pray for him to regain his sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit. Ananias knew about Saul’s activity and was afraid to take on this task. But he did as God directed.
God chose Saul to bear God’s name to the Gentiles, Kings and the Sons of Israel. Imagine how Saul felt when Ananias approached him to pray and addressed him as Brother Saul (see Acts 9:17). God stopped Saul, humbled him, healed him, and then empowered him with a new task.
Isn’t that like believers today? When we get instructions from the Lord, we may be reluctant to act, BUT need to follow what he says. It may be as simple as the word “GO!” Or it may be even more difficult! He’s promised to continue guiding us if we trust Him. Yes, he knows what is best for us.
Prayer: Father, please give me the strength and faith to follow your guidance.
Questions: Has the Lord told you to do something which may have seemed outrageous? How did you respond?