As I continue to examine carefully the life of Paul the Apostle, we must agree that it is only God who can work such a miracle in such a short time as He did with Saul. From being a man bent on destroying the Church to a man in love with the gospel, Jesus and the Church, it is only the mighty grace of God that can do this.
His powerful preaching brought to light sceptics in the Church who could not believe that this Christ-hater could become a Christ-lover. NEVER underestimate the power of God’s grace! In Saul’s preaching the gospel of pure grace that touched his life, it stirred up persons who disputed what Saul preached and they wanted to kill him (Acts 9:29). This minor conflict revealed those who saw and understood this grace and moved to protect Saul, taking him to Tarsus.
Such maneuvers were not in vain. “So, the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace and were being built up. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it multiplied” (Acts 9:31). Notice the five fruits from this new convert:
1. Churches that faced persecution were now experiencing peace. This is the peace of Christ.
2. The gospel was “building up” believers, making them stronger in their faith and practice.
3. Disciples were learning to walk “in the fear of the Lord” which showed reverence for the authority in Christ and His Word.
4. Though circumstances were difficult, churches received comfort and courage to press on.
5. The effect of the gospel through Saul was multiplication.
Are these characteristics true of you and your church? If not, honestly ask what is missing, then appeal to the Lord Jesus our Head, to bring you back to the pure gospel and its power.
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