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Scripture Reading: Acts 9:1-6

The Conversion of Saul

(Acts 9)



1.  The great persecutor is forever changed: Saul goes from faithless to faithful, from persecutor to preacher, from antagonist to apostle.

2.  Saul’s conversion is remarkable and a pattern for all, 1 Tim. 1:12-16.

3.  The church continued to grow and have peace in the midst of trial.



  A. Saul Continued Persecuting the Disciples, 9:1.

    1.  A man of zeal without knowledge, Saul persecuted saints to the death, Acts 22:3-5; 26:9-12 (Phil. 3:6).

    2.  His teacher’s counsel went unheeded by this arrogant young man, Acts 5:39 (1 Tim. 1:13).

  B.  The Personal Appearance of Jesus to Saul, Acts 9:3-7.

    1.  Visible and audible phenomena, 9:3-5 (7).

    2.  Jesus challenges self-examination and identifies Himself, 9:4-5.

    3.  Saul is brought to faith (9:6).

    4.  Commanded to go into Damascus to be told what he must do, 9:6.


II. SAUL IN DAMASCUS, Acts 9:10-25.

  A.  Jesus Sent Ananias to Saul, Acts 9:10-16 (22:12).

    1.  Like Philip, the Lord sent the preacher to the sinner.

    2.  Ananias’ faith is tested, 9:10, 13-14. cf. 2 Tim. 4:2-5

    3.  Why the Lord sent him to Saul:

      a.  Restore sight, 9:17-18,

      b.  Baptize, 9:18; 22:14-16,

      c.  Be filled with the Holy Spirit, 9:17.

  B.  Jesus Selected Saul to be an Apostle, Acts 9:15-16; 22:14-15; 26:16.

    1.  Chosen vessel: Divine implement to spread the gospel, 2 Cor. 4:7.

    2.  Bear my name: Gentiles (kings) and Israel.

    3.  Saul would learn humility in service and suffering for the Lord.

  C.  Saul is Saved when he Obeyed, Acts 9:6.

    1.  Repentant believer (fasting), Acts 9:9.

    2.  Praying, Acts 9:11. (Prayer is not “calling on name of Lord”, 22:16)

    3.  Sinner 3 days later and until washed away, Acts 22:16.

  D.  The Next Three Years: Paul Preaches Christ, Acts 9:19-25; Gal. 1:16-18.

    1.  Spent some days with the disciples in Damascus, 9:19.

    2.  Immediately preached Christ, Acts 9:20; Gal. 1:16-17.

       -Came through revelation, Gal. 1:11-12 (16); Eph. 3:3-4.

    3.  Went to Arabia and returned to Damascus, Gal. 1:17 (cf. Rom. 15:20-21).

    4.  Was in Damascus many days, Acts 9:23 (Gal. 1:18).

      a.  Jews plot to kill Saul, Acts 9:23.

      b.  Escaped, Acts 9:24-25; 2 Cor. 11:32-33.


III. SAUL IN JERUSALEM, Ac 9:26-30; 22:17-21; Gal. 1:18-20 (15 days).

  A.  Living Down a Bad Reputation, 9:26-28.

    1.  His past sins made the brethren suspicious and fearful, 9:26.

    2.  Barnabas vouched for his genuine conversion – accepted, 9:27.

        -God’s forgiveness is complete – Ours must be, too!

    3.  Hellenist Jews tried to kill Saul, Acts 9:29.

        -Wanted to stay…delivered by the Lord, Acts 22:17-21 (9:30).

    4.  Important to identify ourselves with a local church, 9:26.

        -Right to identify with a local church and for that church to verify your faithfulness, cf. Acts 18:27.

    5.  An example of forgiveness and unity in Christ, 9:27-28.

  B.  Lord Sent Saul Away to the Gentiles, Acts 9:30; 22:18, 21.



  A.  Christ’s Strategy for Peaceful Unity and Growth, Acts 9:31.

    1.  Edified (in truth): Teaching the word and living it.

    2.  Walking in fear of God (Matt. 10:28). Reverent lives and worship

    3.  Walking in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, 2 Cor. 1:3-5 (He. 2:3-4). Encouraged by the assurance of truth caused them to trust it.

    4.  Multiplied even during time of forceful persecution. (Acts 8:4)

  B.  Peter Preached and Worked Miracles in Judea, 9:32-43.

    1.  Lydda: ~35 mi. NW of Jerusalem; Aeneas healed and people turned to the Lord.

    2.  Joppa: ~45 mi. NW of Jerusalem; On the coast (modern Jaffa).

      a.  Death of Tabitha (Dorcas): Full of good works and charity, 9:36; 1 Tim. 2:10.

      b.  Peter brought to Joppa; Raised Dorcas from the dead, 9:40-41; cf. Matt. 17:19-20.

      c.  Many believed when they heard of the miracle, 9:42.

      d.  Peter lodged with Simon, a tanner, 9:43.

         -The most scrupulous Jews regarded tanners as unclean. Peter evidently didn’t hold this prejudice. But, he would object to eating unclean meat on the man’s housetop (Acts 10:10-16).

         -“The lodging with the tanner was a step on the road to eating with a Gentile” (Furneaux, cited in Robertson’s Word Pictures).



1.  Acts 9: Saul begins his life of faith and sacrifice, Phil. 3:4-7.

2.  Although he faced great resistance, Saul prevailed in Christ, 2 Tim. 4:6-8.

3.  Let us follow his example. Gal. 2:20



By: Joe R. Price

Posted: July 5, 2013