This sermon was based on Acts 9:1-9.
The Conversion of Saul
1But Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven shone around him. 4And falling to the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?” 5And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. 6But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”
7The men who were travelling with him stood speechless, hearing the voice but seeing no one. 8Saul rose from the ground, and although his eyes were opened, he saw nothing. So they led him by the hand and brought him into Damascus. 9And for three days he was without sight, and neither ate nor drank.
This Man Saul
- Saul was there when people were killing Stephen.
- He is now much more active – ‘breathing out murderous threats’ … and continuing the persecution of those followers of Jesus.
- God has given this man many abilities, but he is using them to oppose Jesus-followers. By the end of this chapter he has changed.
Saul Meets Jesus
- Jesus stops Saul in his tracks. The conversation is short. No discussion about whether Jesus really is the Son of God, or whether he really did rise from the dead!
- If God can use a person like Saul then he can use anybody!
- If God has time for Saul then he has time for you! Come and talk with him regularly – no special words or style needed – just come and talk to him every day.
How Should We Pray?
- So often when we pray we tell God what he should do. Of all the things those Christians in Damascus prayed I doubt whether Saul becoming an example to them – and a leading evangelist – would have been one of their requests! So let’s come and pray, but not tell God what we think he needs to do!
- Let’s pray for our friends, relatives, neighbours – and be ready to tell them about Jesus when we get the opportunity.
- But let’s also pray for the people we don’t like – some of the nasty people. You and I don’t know what God’s plans for them might be. Be ready; you might end up being a part of their Damascus Road experience!