Irvin Wasswa- Tylertown Campus Pastor LHBC
19 For some days he was with the disciples at Damascus. 20 And immediately he proclaimed Jesus in the synagogues, saying, “He is the Son of God.” 21 And all who heard him were amazed and said, “Is not this the man who made havoc in Jerusalem of those who called upon this name? And has he not come here for this purpose, to bring them bound before the chief priests?” 22 But Saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the Jews who lived in Damascus by proving that Jesus was the Christ.
The context of Acts 9 is an interesting one to say the least. The main character, Saul was a man who was known as being a persecutor of Christians during the first century. He would go to areas, seek out Christians and send them to prison. He was far away from the Christian movement. He was an opponent of Jesus… BUT GOD! He met Jesus on the road to Damascus earlier in this chapter and his life was radically changed. Saul went from an opponent of the movement of Jesus to a follower of Him. Soon enough he became a part of the work of God in sharing the Gospel.
Now, we know Saul of Tarsus as the Apostle Paul who wrote more than half of the New Testament, and we know him as the man who was perhaps the Great Missionary to ever live. However, we have to understand that even he had a starting place in learning how to evangelize. Acts 9:19b tells us that he spent some days with the disciples at Damascus before going out. That time was all about him being invested in and poured into as a new Christian. Paul was very smart and knew a good bit about the scriptures, but had a fundamental misunderstanding of the Gospel message. He needed to have that time to sit, learn, and grow as a disciple.
What was next for Paul? He went out with the disciples and shared the Gospel in the synagogues in that area. It says in verse 22 that Saul continued to grow in strength and shared the Gospel all the more. As Saul went and shared, he grew in his confidence and competency to share the Gospel. Here’s the reality for us, as we go and share the gospel, we too will grow in those same areas.
Sharing our faith is seen as a daunting task at first glance. It is seen as something that is too difficult and what happens is that we can conjure up different excuses on why we won’t share. Here’s the deal though, as Christians we are ALL called to share the good news of Jesus (Mark 16:15); and listen, you can do it. If you are a “rookie” in sharing your faith, be like Saul; Be willing to learn. Seek out men and women in the church who are farther along than you spiritually and ask them to invest in you and teach you the Gospel and how to communicate that truth to those around you. Also, be willing to step out and just do it. Obviously have a plan, but at the end of the day just step out and share the hope of Jesus with someone. Perhaps you share with someone your story of how Jesus saved you and how He wants to do that in that lost friend’s life. Evangelism is taught but also caught. You grow in your confidence and ability to share Jesus by simply sharing Jesus. So share Him with the world.
Who is that person in your life that needs to hear the news of Jesus today? Pray the Lord shows you that person, pray for the Lord to give you boldness to share, and just go and share because remember: As you go, you are going to grow.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
Lord, help me this morning to see this reality that as we go and share, we are going to grow in our evangelism. Give me the boldness to step out and share Jesus with people, knowing that as I go and share, I am going to grow in my ability and confidence to share the Gospel. In Jesus’ name Amen!
MEMORY VERSE OF THE WEEK:
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places