Summary: Paul returns to Jerusalem and faces the same type of misjudgments he had made earlier in life. In the face of such opportunity he takes the opportunity to share his testimony.
A Christian man owned a barber shop. One night, at a revival meeting, the barber felt greatly burdened to do more with his testimony for Christ. The next evening, the barber began attending a "soul winners class" at his church. He attended faithfully every night for two weeks. He rehearsed all the material, took extensive notes, and memorized the assigned Bible verses. At the end of the two weeks he received a plaque acknowledging his completion of the course.
The next morning, in the barber shop, he hung the plaque and bowed his head. "Dear Lord," he prayed, "help me to witness to the first man to come through that door this morning." At that moment in walked the biggest, meanest, foulest man the barber had ever seen. It seems this man had recently lost a bet with some "biker" buddies and now he had to get his head shaved. Needless to say, the barber did not feel very comfortable quoting the "Roman Road" to a man with a tattoo on his neck.
The rest of the day did not go any better for the barber. At 5:00 p.m., the barber was sobbing with shame. He had not witnessed to a single person. He bowed his head again. This time he prayed, "Lord, if you will allow one more opportunity, I promise I will do my part." At that, the door opened and in walked a pleasant looking gentleman. The man smiled at the barber, apologized for coming in so late and took a seat in the chair.
As the barber draped the man in his protective sheet, he began to try to remember what he was supposed to say. He began to get very confused. As the barber put shaving cream on the man’s face, he tried to remember the answers he had learned to the possible objections. As the barber began to strop his razor, he realized that he simply could not remember a thing he had learned. This made the barber very nervous and soon sweat began to break out on his forehead.
Finally, in desperation, he shook the razor at the man and screamed, "ARE YOU PREPARED TO DIE??!!!"
Acts 22:1-21“Brothers and fathers, listen now to my defense.” When they heard him speak to them in Aramaic, they became very quiet. Then Paul said: “I am a Jew, born in Tarsus of Cilicia, but brought up in this city. Under Gamaliel I was thoroughly trained in the law of our fathers and was just as zealous for God as any of you are today. I persecuted the followers of this Way to their death, arresting both men and women and throwing them into prison, as also the high priest and all the Council can testify. I even obtained letters from them to their brothers in Damascus, and went there to bring these people as prisoners to Jerusalem to be punished. “About noon as I came near Damascus, suddenly a bright light from heaven flashed around me. I fell to the ground and heard a voice say to me, ‘Saul! Saul! Why do you persecute me?’ “Who are you, Lord?' I asked. “I am Jesus of Nazareth, whom you are persecuting, ‘he replied. My companions saw the light, but they did not understand the voice of him who was speaking to me. “What shall I do, Lord?” I asked.” ‘Get up,’ the Lord said, ‘and go into Damascus. There you will be told all that you have been assigned to do.’ My companions led me by the hand into Damascus, because the brilliance of the light had blinded me. “A man named Ananias came to see me. He was a devout observer of the law and highly respected by all the Jews living there. He stood beside me and said, ‘Brother Saul, receive your sight!’ And at that very moment I was able to see him. “Then he said: ‘The God of our fathers has chosen you to know his will and to see the Righteous One and to hear words from his mouth. You will be his witness to all men of what you have seen and heard. And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.’ “When I returned to Jerusalem and was praying at the temple, I fell into a trance and saw the Lord speaking. 'Quick!' he said to me. ‘Leave Jerusalem immediately, because they will not accept your testimony about me.’ “'Lord,' I replied, ‘these men know that I went from one synagogue to another to imprison and beat those who believe in you. And when the blood of your martyr Stephen was shed, I stood there giving my approval and guarding the clothes of those who were killing him.’ “Then the Lord said to me, ‘Go; I will send you far away to the Gentiles.’