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Preparing Paul to Preach the Gospel
Paul’s Time in the Wilderness
Paul spent three years in the Arabian desert after the Damascus road experience being training by Christ to present the gospel to the Gentiles. He then returns to Damascus where he proclaim Jesus is the Son of God.
9.1 And Saul yet breathing a threat and murder unto the disciples of the Lord, after going to the high priest, 9.2 asked from him a letter unto Damascus towards the synagogues so that if perhaps he found some of the way being both men and women, after binding them, he should lead them to Jerusalem. 9.3 And in the journey, he came near to Damascus and suddenly shining around him a light from the heaven. 9.4 And after falling upon the ground, he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute Me?” 9.5 And he said, “Who are you sir?” And the Lord said, “I am Jesus whom you persecute.” 9.6 But you stand and enter into the city and I will speak with you, what it is necessary for you to do. 9.7 And the men, the ones journeying with him stood speechless, on the one hand hearing a sound, on the other hand not watching anyone. 9.8 And Saul rose up from the ground, after opening his eyes he saw no one, And while they led him by the hand they entered into Damascus. 9.9 And he was three days without seeing and he did not eat nor drink. 9.10 And there was a certain disciple in Damascus named Ananias, and the Lord said to him in a vision, “Ananias.” And he said, “Look […]
Persuading (πείθω) involves convincing someone to follow a particular viewpoint or course of action.
The High Priests and elders of Israel persuaded the people to request a murderer be set free while condemning a righteous man, Matthew 27:20. After they had Him crucified by the hand of Pilate, standing at the cross, they mocked Christ, saying, “He was persuaded on the basis of God. Now, let Him deliver Him if He desires, for He said that I am the Son of God.” Knowing that Jesus was the Messiah and that He stated if they destroyed His body, He would raise it in three days, the High Priests and elders persuaded Pilate to seal the tomb and put a guard at it so no one could steal the body. However, three days later, some of the guards assigned to the tomb came into the city and told the High Priest of the angel and the tomb opening, for the One they had condemned to death and mocked God answered and raised Him out from the dead. Concerned over this news, the High Priest and elders offer the guards a large sum of money to say the disciples overtook them while they slept. And if the governor hears of this, they will persuade him and make them secure, Matthew 28:14. The absurdity of such a statement is socking, for if they were caught sleeping, they would be killed, and if they failed in their duties, they would face execution. During Christ’s earthly ministry, while addressing the Pharisees, who were fond of money, He speaks of a rich man and Lazarus. This is not a parable but a historical record of two men: one who trusted in his […]
Regret (μεταμέλομαι) is caused when someone feels sorry or remorse concerning a previous action. It is not equivalent to repent (μετάνοια), which means to change the mind.
When Paul had to write a letter to the saint in Corinth to correct their unbecoming behavior, he was very poignant in his comments. However, even though Paul was sorry that he had to be so hard, he did not regret writing the letter, 2 Corinthians 7:8. Through the letter, he caused them to grieve; however, this type of grief brings a change of mind, not death, 1 Corinthians 7:10.
In one of His encounters with the leaders of Israel, Jesus speaks of two sons who respond in different ways to their father’s request. The first son refused to work in the vineyard; however, after considering his father’s request, he regretted his response and went to work, Matthew 21:29. The second one agreed with the father’s request but did not go. This was to point out the fact that John the Baptist came to the leaders of Israel in righteousness, and even though they did not receive him, the tax collector and harlots did. Seeing their change of mind in response to John’s message should have opened the leader’s eyes; however, they still did not regret rejecting his message, Matthew 21:32.
Judas Iscariot was a thief, John 12:6. He was the only disciple of the twelve who did not believe that Jesus was the Messiah; however, because he handled the purse, he chose to stay with them. This type of attitude led to betraying Christ for thirty pieces of silver. However, his intent was not for Christ to be put to death; rather, he was expecting them to […]
Having a firm mental grasp or acquiring information is expressed by ἐπίσταμαι (epistamai). Its root means to stand (ιστημι). Therefore, it expresses standing with a firm mental grasp because of the information a person is acquainted with.
In Peter’s denial of Christ, when questioned by a young servant girl if he was with Christ, he adamantly denied it, saying that he neither intuitively knows nor has acquired knowledge concerning Christ, Mark 14:68. After Peter is restored from the attack by Satan that caused him to deny Christ, God uses him to show the Jews that the Gentiles are also being accepted into the Church. In Cornelius’ house, Peter states that they have a firm mental grasp on the fact that it is not permissible for a Jew to fellowship or enter into a place with another nation, Acts 10:28. However before Cornelius sent for Paul, God showed him that he is not to call any man common or unclean and, therefore, Peter came without objection.
During the council in Acts chapter fifteen concerning whether or not the Gentiles should be circumcised and obey the law of Moses, Peter spoke up concerning what God had been doing. The elders and apostles present had acquired knowledge concerning the situation when God instructed Peter to enter into the house of a Gentile so they could hear the gospel. They were neither circumcised nor immersed before the Holy Spirit came upon them in the same manner as He did on the day of Pentecost to show the Jews a sign, Acts 15:5.
When Apollos came to Ephesus, he was mighty in the Scripture; however, he was only familiar with (had a firm mental grasp) the immersion of John, Acts […]