A Missionary is Born (Acts 9:1-22)

Martin Reakes-Williams, Sunday, September 15, 2013
Part of the misc. series, preached at a Sunday Morning service

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Acts 9:1-22, NLT

Acts of the Apostles 9

Saul’s Conversion

1Meanwhile, Saul was uttering threats with every breath and was eager to kill the Lord’s followers.*9:1 Greek disciples. So he went to the high priest. 2He requested letters addressed to the synagogues in Damascus, asking for their cooperation in the arrest of any followers of the Way he found there. He wanted to bring them—both men and women—back to Jerusalem in chains.

3As he was approaching Damascus on this mission, a light from heaven suddenly shone down around him. 4He fell to the ground and heard a voice saying to him, “Saul! Saul! Why are you persecuting me?”

5“Who are you, lord?” Saul asked.

And the voice replied, “I am Jesus, the one you are persecuting! 6Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”

7The men with Saul stood speechless, for they heard the sound of someone’s voice but saw no one! 8Saul picked himself up off the ground, but when he opened his eyes he was blind. So his companions led him by the hand to Damascus. 9He remained there blind for three days and did not eat or drink.

10Now there was a believer*9:10 Greek disciple; also in 9:26, 36. in Damascus named Ananias. The Lord spoke to him in a vision, calling, “Ananias!”

“Yes, Lord!” he replied.

11The Lord said, “Go over to Straight Street, to the house of Judas. When you get there, ask for a man from Tarsus named Saul. He is praying to me right now. 12I have shown him a vision of a man named Ananias coming in and laying hands on him so he can see again.”

13“But Lord,” exclaimed Ananias, “I’ve heard many people talk about the terrible things this man has done to the believers*9:13 Greek God’s holy people; also in 9:32, 41. in Jerusalem! 14And he is authorized by the leading priests to arrest everyone who calls upon your name.”

15But the Lord said, “Go, for Saul is my chosen instrument to take my message to the Gentiles and to kings, as well as to the people of Israel. 16And I will show him how much he must suffer for my name’s sake.”

17So Ananias went and found Saul. He laid his hands on him and said, “Brother Saul, the Lord Jesus, who appeared to you on the road, has sent me so that you might regain your sight and be filled with the Holy Spirit.” 18Instantly something like scales fell from Saul’s eyes, and he regained his sight. Then he got up and was baptized. 19Afterward he ate some food and regained his strength.

Saul in Damascus and Jerusalem

Saul stayed with the believers*9:19 Greek disciples; also in 9:26, 38. in Damascus for a few days. 20And immediately he began preaching about Jesus in the synagogues, saying, “He is indeed the Son of God!”

21All who heard him were amazed. “Isn’t this the same man who caused such devastation among Jesus’ followers in Jerusalem?” they asked. “And didn’t he come here to arrest them and take them in chains to the leading priests?”

22Saul’s preaching became more and more powerful, and the Jews in Damascus couldn’t refute his proofs that Jesus was indeed the Messiah.

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