January 24, 2019
Exodus 7-8; Acts 9-10. Maybe There's a Better Way
Read with me. What did you get out of these chapters? Use the SOAP method. Read a chapter (or more). Ask the Lord to show you one Scripture verse to think about. Write down Observations, and then ways you can Apply the verse. Finally, Pray the verse back to God.
Acts 9:22-23 (NIV) Yet Saul grew more and more powerful and baffled the Jews living in Damascus by proving that Jesus is the Christ. After many days had gone by, the Jews conspired to kill him.
1. Context: Saul was a superior pharisee who was gung-ho on rounding up all the new Christ-followers for jail and worse. On his trip to Damascus, his encounter with the risen Jesus radically changed him.
2. We can grow in power.
3. How did Saul prove that Jesus is the Christ?
First, Scripture. All his academic training to become a Pharisee kicked in. He had to memorize the first five books of the Old Testament, as well as the teachings of the prophets. Suddenly it all made sense! The story of Moses, the Ten Commandments, the Tabernacle, the prophesies, were ALL showing the Messiah, and the details around Jesus were too perfect. The proof was there in their Scriptures.
Second, NOT by miracles like Jesus, Peter, John, and Philip. They came later, but not here.
Third and most powerful: the proof of his changed life. When Jesus saves us, it should show.
4. The Jews went from being baffled by proof to “Kill Saul.”
5. No one likes to feel their way is threatened or to be proven wrong. Natural response: “Kill Saul.”
6. Humans haven’t changed. History shows this reaction among scientists, explorers, educators, politicians, theologians, businessmen, and pretty much every change agent.
1. It’s good to know the truth and how to prove it. The Old Testament proves Jesus is Lord (Acts 17:2; 18:28).
2. Knowing the truth and how to prove it is good. Knowing how to lead someone to faith is better.
3. Maybe there is a better way to win souls than by proving someone is wrong.
4. Maybe our reaction to significant change should be to listen and discuss rather than “Kill Saul.”
Thank You, Lord for Your amazing, accurate, and applicable written word. The story of Jesus is in every book. Please open our eyes like you did Saul’s so it becomes so obviously clear to us… like those 3D pictures everyone stared at in the late 90s. Help us to be able to prove Jesus from the Scriptures, and more importantly, from our own lives.