Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Acts 9:17-22

17Then Ananias went to the house and entered it. Placing his hands on Saul, he said, "Brother Saul, the Lord—Jesus, who appeared to you on the road as you were coming here—has sent me so that you may see again and be filled with the Holy Spirit."

18Immediately, something like scales fell from Saul's eyes, and he could see again. He got up and was baptized, 19and after taking some food, he regained his strength.

Saul spent several days with the disciples in Damascus. 20At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. 21All those who heard him were astonished and asked, "Isn't he the man who raised havoc in Jerusalem among those who call on this name? And hasn't he come here to take them as prisoners to the chief priests?"

22Yet Saul grew more and more powerful and baffled the Jews living in Damascus by proving that Jesus is the Christ."

Saul received the Holy Spirit

It is unnecessary to speculate on exactly how Ananias received the ability to heal. The blinding was supernatural, and so was the restoration of sight. In all that Ananias did and said, he was the agent of the Lord.

Ananias called him "Brother Saul." I would think that he felt no threat when he saw Saul for the first time and began to speak to him. "I have come for 2 reasons, the Lord Jesus sent me so that you may see again, AND be filled with the Holy Spirit."

I wonder if the decision to be baptized was hard for Saul? (Then again he had 3 days alone with God to consider many things in his spiritual life. ) The most difficult part was calling on the name of Jesus. It meant that Saul was acknowledging Jesus as Lord, that he was being baptized by His authority, and that he was committing the rest of his life to Him. It meant that Saul had to turn his back on all that was near and dear to him; family, friends, fame, and fortune.

I can remember the several days after my baptism, I could not contain myself. I wanted to share what God had done for me. I was exploding with the H. S. on the inside and had to let the words flow out. I too had to count the cost, and leave behind the many obstacles that were preventing me from making the decision that would lead to my destiny.

Saul was encouraged by the disciples for days before he preached in the synagogue. Those present were totally confused when they heard Saul's words. Didn't this Jewish scholar who was zealous for the Law come to Damascus to round up the believers in Jesus and take them back to Jerusalem? Instead Saul stood up for Jesus Christ.

Of course the Jews were amazed by the message, but even more by the messenger!

No comments: