Renewer of Life January 13
Galatians 1: 13
For you have heard of my former conduct in Judaism, how I persecuted the church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it.
This was the Apostle Paul explaining his call to the ministry of Jesus. Paul’s name originally was Saul (Acts 13:9). Saul had a reputation, notice how he did not say, ‘Maybe thou hast heard of my former days?” That is because he knew they had heard of him. Saul was a very brutal man when it came to the things of the church.
One day Jesus gave me a vision of Saul from Tarsus. It was real, in real time. I was tied to a post that was like a T, with my arms and hands stretched out tied to the top rail. Saul was standing there, he had a leather whip in his hands, reddish brown hair and a full reddish-brown beard. He was wearing a long robe and by the embroidery or design on it you could tell he was not a poor man. Saul looked intense, almost like a forced anger when he gritted his teeth and took the whip. As he pulled the whip backwards over his shoulder, he was not going to withhold from delivering pain. As the tail of the whip approached me, I came out of it.
It was then that I realized how bad of a man Paul used to be. He had tortured Christians, and he was very good at getting Christians to renounce on Christ. But, something happened on the road to Damascus (Acts 9). Jesus arrived! Not with what Saul deserved but with a new name! A new mission! People would have rejoiced had Jesus just struck Saul dead on that road. However, Jesus already knew what Paul would become, the author.
Paul went on to write over half of the New Testament. He was whipped 195 times throughout his life. I can’t help but think what he must have thought when every lash hit his back, ‘Is it payback?’ No, Satan was trying to get Paul to become Saul again, don’t let your past sins whip you back into the former you.
He is: Shub Nephesh
Renewer of Life