Tuesday, July 21, 2009
Light from Heaven
1 But Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest 2 and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any belonging to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem. 3 Now as he went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. 4 And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?" 5 And he said, "Who are you, Lord?" And he said, "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting. But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do."
Acts 9:1-6, English Standard Version
Light from Heaven
Christ had gone to heaven, and the new church was in a turmoil. Well meaning Jews, such as Saul were persecuting the new Christians, but, though Christ was gone, His light still shone upon his children. In Acts 9, we have a rather spectacular event. Saul, who was on his way to Damascus to capture believers in the Way, fell to the ground when a great light from heaven shone upon him, and he heard the voice of God.
God had chosen this man, who was feared by all the believers, to shine his light from heaven to Jews and Gentiles alike. Through Saul, whose name was changed to Paul, we have much of the New Testament. God not only used Paul to bring many to Christ during his lifetime, but He is also continuing to use Paul through the many letters in the New Testament that Paul had written to the new churches springing up throughout Asia.
Understandably, the believers were rather reluctant to follow Paul. Was this just a new trick of his to capture more Christians and bring them to Jerusalem to suffer persecution? Knowing their doubts, God spoke to Ananias in a vision, telling him to go to the house where Paul, now blinded from the light from heaven, was staying, and minister to him.
When Ananias objected, God told him, "Go, for he is a chosen instrument of mine to carry my name before the Gentiles and kings and the children of Israel. For I will show him how much he must suffer for the sake of my name." (Acts 9:15-16)
We, as Christians today are, like Paul, chosen vessels to bring his light from heaven to all those with whom we come in contact. And, like Paul, we are the weak ones in the world whom God has chosen to confound the wise.
Go this day and and be a chosen instrument of God! Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works and glorify your father in heaven.
God Bless You,