But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.”
- Acts 9:15-16 NIV
Saul made it his life’s mission to oppose the spread of Christianity, but in driving the followers of Jesus out of Jerusalem, he unintentionally its spread. As he traveled around, tracking down followers of Jesus to arrest them, Saul had a life-changing encounter with Jesus, greeted the name Paul, and made it his life’s mission to spread the message of Jesus, becoming perhaps the person most responsible throughout all of history for the proliferation of the Christian faith.
We learn from Paul that no one is beyond hope. No one is too evil, too bad, or too broken to be transformed by the gospel; not you or me--no matter what we’ve done--and not even the people you and I have given up on.
[Upward] What did this passage reveal to you about God? Praise him for being that God.
[Inward] What did this passage bring up in you? Be honest with God about your questions and shortcomings, your fears and desires.
[Outward] What does this passage call me to in relationship to others in my world? Ask God to help you take your place in the new chapter of the Book of Acts that is being written in your life today.