Summary: Christ can save anybody, but every person must accept the truth about Jesus Christ if he or she is to be saved. What did Paul learn about Christ on the road to Damascus?
Jesus, Offering Grace to His Enemies
1. In our Bible, we see several appearances of Jesus Christ. All of these appearances were prophesied beforehand. But did you know that Christ made a surprise, unprophesied appearance? He appeared in Acts 9 to a man named Saul of Tarsus.
2. One of the most significant events in the Bible is the salvation and conversion of Saul of Tarsus (better known as the apostle Paul). Why do I say this? Consider this:
• Saul’s conversion is more fully described and more often referred to than any other conversion in the Bible.
• It is more fully described and referred to than any other personal experience in the Bible, other than the crucifixion and resurrection of Christ.
• Virtually three entire chapters in the book of Acts are taken up with the account of Paul’s salvation.
• So aware was Paul himself of the significance of his conversion that he refers to it repeatedly in the 13 books he wrote in the New Testament.
3. Paul was a blaspheming Christ-rejecter on his way to Damascus to arrest believers. On the road to Damascus, he had a face-to-face encounter with the risen Savior, Jesus! Paul was the chief enemy of Christ, but that day he became a believer. He was a changed man.
4. Here in Acts 9 we have the record of exactly what happened and what was said. Paul recognized and accepted several truths about Jesus Christ that he had not understood or accepted previously.
5. Christ can save anybody, but every person must accept the truth about Jesus Christ if he or she is to be saved. What did Paul learn that day about Christ?
First, Paul learned that Jesus Christ is light.
1. Paul was a cruel persecutor of Christ’s followers (vs. 1-2). Notice the word “yet.” How much blasphemy and bloodshed is contained in that little word “yet!”
2. This is a reference to the entire time period of chapter 8 when Paul made havock of the church (8:3), persecuting it beyond measure, laying it waste. Galatians 1:13
3. Then suddenly a light shines around him (vs. 3). This wasn’t a normal light, but a light from heaven (vs. 3), a great light (22:6), a glorious light (22:11), and a light that was brighter than the sun at full strength. 26:13
4. As you read on, you learn that this light was Jesus Christ! Over and over again, Jesus declared Himself to be the light of the world. John 12:46
• Paul didn’t believe this about Christ. Paul thought his self-righteous religion was light. He thought he was walking in light. He excelled in the Jews’ religion. Paul was religious, but lost, groping in darkness. Then he realized, Jesus is light!
• Without Jesus Christ, you are in darkness. John 8:12
5. Paul was walking on the road in the physical light of the sun, but in spiritual darkness. After meeting Christ, he was walking in physical darkness (blind), but in the spiritual light of the Son, Jesus Christ.
6. Maybe today you feel like you are stumbling through life in darkness. Come to Jesus! He will give you light to walk through this life. Ephesians 5:8, 14