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Saul's Damascus Road Experience (20 of 24)
Series: The Acts of the Apostles: A Verse-by-Verse Study
INTRODUCTION: In our lesson last week, we had concluded chapter 8, with the exciting story about Philip and the conversion of the Ethiopian Eunuch. This evening, we begin chapter 9, and the story of Saul's encounter with the Lord on the road to Damascus.
Let's consider three things:
I. Saul's Encounter
II. Saul's Instruction
III. Saul's Change
I. SAUL'S ENCOUNTER (VV. 1-5)
A. The Circumstances (vv. 1, 2)
1. At this point in our story, Saul is on his way to the city of Damascus. He had obtained letters of authority from the high priest in Jerusalem, in order that he could arrest any Christians he might find. You will notice in (vs. 2), that it didn't make any difference to him whether they were men or women, it was all the same. You can sense the visceral hatred he had for Jesus and anyone associated with Him. It says in (vs. 1) that Saul was ''breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord.''
a. It should come as no surprise to Christians that they are hated by the world. In Luke 6:22, the Bible says, ''Blessed are ye, when men shall hate you, and when they shall separate you from their company, and shall reproach you, and cast out your name as evil, for the Son of man's sake.''
ILLUS: A few years ago, the pastor of a North Carolina church placed an array of crosses, all draped in black, in front of his little church, just before Good Friday. It wasn't long before the pastor received a call from the North Myrtle Beach Chamber of Commerce: ''Look preacher, we've been getting complaints about those crosses out in your churchyard. Now inside the church, who cares? But out front, where everybody can see them, they are offensive. The retired people here don't like them; they find them depressing. The tourists will not like it either. It will be bad for business. People come down here to ...
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