A DAMASCUS ROAD EXPERIENCE

Scripture Reading:  Acts 9:1-9

“Now as he (Saul) went on his way, he approached Damascus, and suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him.  And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?’  And he said, ‘Who are You, Lord?’  And He said, ‘I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.’” (Acts 9:3-5)

Saul’s conversion experience is not typical — bright lights, a voice from heaven, blindness.  Few people have this dramatic kind of conversion experience.  Saul prior to his conversion was a deeply religious man:  “Though I myself have reason for confidence in the flesh also.  If anyone else things he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more:  circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness, under the law blameless” (Philippians 3:4-6).  Saul put his trust in his spiritual heritage, religion and self-righteousness.  He was filled with religious pride.

On the road to Damascus, he met Jesus.  God humbled Saul and brought him to his knees.  Saul learned that his conversion was completely the result of God’s grace.  It was not about what he was doing for God; it was about what God did for Him in the person of His Son.  On that day, Paul was rescued from the domain of darkness and transferred to the kingdom of God’s Son (Colossians 1:13).  He had a dramatic experience on the road to Damascus.

Let me say again that the conversion experience of Saul was not typical.  Far more typical is the conversion of Timothy who at an early age met Jesus through the faithful witness of a godly mother and grandmother:  “For I am mindful of the sincere faith within you, which first dwelt in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am sure that it is in you as well”  (II Timothy 1:5).  Timothy saw Jesus in his mother and grandmother and they faithfully taught him the Scriptures.

I have met some believers who had a conversion like Timothy who felt short-changed that they did not have a dramatic conversion experience like Saul.  How untrue this is.  God normally works through the nurture of godly parents and grandparents.  This is the nature of God’s covenant.

Lord Jesus, enable me to be a faithful witness and example to my children and grandchildren.  Enable them to see Christ in me.

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