(Acts 9:3-9) As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” “Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked. “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.” The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.
(Romans 11:1, Philippians 3:5) Born at Tarsus (in modern Turkey) of Jewish parents who trace their ancestry to the tribe of Benjamin and who are Roman citizens.
(Acts 22:3) Studied under the first century Jewish rabbi and leader in the Jewish Sanhedrin Gamaliel.
(Acts 23:6, 1 Corinthians 15:9, Galatians 1:13, Philippians 3:6) Claims he is a Pharisee
(Acts 9) Sent as an officer of the Sanhedrin to arrest Christians (Followers of the way) in Damascus and has a salvific encounter with Christ.
(Acts 13-14) 1st Missionary journey to Cyprus and Asia Minor (S. Galatia) Changes his Hebrew name (Saul) to his Latin/Roman name. (Paul)
(Acts 15:36-18:22) 2nd Missionary journey; writes the letters 1 & 2 Thessalonians
(Acts 18:23-21:14) 3rd Missionary journey, wrote first letter to the Corinthians from Ephesus, wrote second letter to the Corinthians written from Macedonia, wrote letter to the Roman Christians from Corinth
(Acts 24:24-27) Imprisoned by the Romans in Caesarea for two years.
(Acts 28:30-31) Under house arrest for two years and writes letters to Christian churches in Colossus, Ephesus, Philippi and to the Christian Philemon.
(II Timothy 4:6-8) Arrested upon his return to Rome; scholars believe he was martyred by beheading.
God desires relationship, not resume.
(Philippians 3:3-7) For it is we who are the circumcision, we who serve God by his Spirit, who boast in Christ Jesus, and who put no confidence in the flesh— though I myself have reasons for such confidence. If someone else thinks they have reasons to put 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; in regard to the law, a Pharisee; as for zeal, persecuting the church; as for righteousness based on the law, faultless. But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ
God’s purpose for my life is greater than my past.
(Acts 9:13-16) “Lord,” Ananias answered, “I have heard many reports about this man and all the harm he has done to your holy people in Jerusalem. And he has come here with authority from the chief priests to arrest all who call on your name.” But the Lord said to Ananias, “Go! This man is my chosen instrument to proclaim my name to the Gentiles and their kings and to the people of Israel. I will show him how much he must suffer for my name.” (Reference Verses: I Corinthians 15:10, Ephesians 2:10, II Corinthians 5:17)
God furnishes everything we need to fulfill our assignment.
(II Corinthians 11:24-27 ESV) Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one. Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. (Reference Verse: I Timothy 1:12-14)