What Paul saw when he was blinded

Published 2:29 pm Thursday, March 23, 2023

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Nearly two thousand years ago a man named Paul was being lowered in a basket down the outer walls of the City of Damascus. Paul was a man on the run, however, some new friends (Christians) were protecting him, helping him to escape certain death if he is caught. But why did some of the Jews of that city want him dead?
Paul had recently obeyed the Gospel of Christ and had begun to preach Jesus in the synagogue. Perhaps some would have asked Paul why would you preach a message that you once denied being the truth? Why would you preach a message that infuriated your kinsmen, the Jews? Why would you preach a message that would cause you such hardship and eventually death. The answer must be that Paul, after being blinded by God, began to see, that is to realize some important things that he had never seen before. Consider what Paul saw that many today need to see.
First, Paul saw his own ignorance of God, His Word, and His plan to save mankind from their own sins. The one-time blasphemer of Christianity and of Christ would eventually pray for Christianity and that his own people (Jews) would come to the same truth that he had come to understand and defend. According to Romans 1:16-17, Paul understood that the gospel of Christ must be preached and obeyed by mankind.
Second, he saw that Jesus was truly the Son of God (Acts 9:20). According to Acts 17:1-4, Paul saw that the gospel needed to be preached to all men everywhere. As Paul and other great men of God traveled from place to place, they preached that Jesus was indeed the Son of God and the Saviour of the world; with that message, and the efforts of such men as Paul, all men eventually heard the saving message of the gospel (Col. 1:23).
Third, Paul saw that he was indeed a sinner and in need of salvation. Though he once saw himself as a Hebrew among Hebrews, he came to realize that he was a sinner and wrote to Timothy concerning that fact (1 Timothy 1:15). He had overcome his own arrogance and pride and submitted to the will of God. In Romans 10:10 & 23, he proved that all men sin and fall short of the glory of God.
Fourth, Paul saw that sincerity alone was not enough to save man from his sin. There is no doubt of his sincerity (Acts 23:1), as he sought out Christians and committed them to prison, even consenting to their execution. After his meeting with Jesus, Paul realized that he was persecuting the church and Jesus (Acts 9:4). Eventually Paul would become a Christian. As a Christian Paul would defend his Apostleship and testify to his dedication to the Lord and the Church for which Jesus died (Gal. 1:13-14).
Fifth, Paul saw that the Law of Moses had passed away and that all men were amenable to the Law of Christ. Paul himself had been trained by a great teacher of the Law (Gamaliel). Without regard to any man, Paul practiced and lived the Jewish faith. However, following his conversion, Paul understood that any attempt of justification under the Law of Moses was equivalent to falling from grace (Galatians 5:4). Understanding this, Paul made a change religiously, he did so regardless of what it cost him (loss of friends, position, wealth). However, he gained what all men need, salvation in the form of forgiveness of his sins.
Finally, Paul understood what it took to gain that salvation. On the part of deity, it cost the life of the Son of God. On his part he saw that it took action in the form of obedience to the Law of Christ. His past successes were not enough. He saw through his experience that he could not merely pray to God to receive salvation (Acts 9:10-11), but he had to do as he was commanded. Upon that realization, Paul was led to Damascus where he met Ananias. It was there that he was told what to do.
All men should come to see what Paul saw. All men should hear the Word of God, have belief that Jesus is the Son of God, Repent of their sins, Confess the name of Christ, be baptized into Christ and live a faithful life. Upon obedience, all men can become a tool of good for God.
Do you see what Paul saw???
(Tony Hoss is minister of the Centerview Church of Christ, Elizabethton)

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