April 05, 2023 – Wednesday
Acts 9:30 NIV
30 When the believers learned of this, they took him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus.
This is the story of Saul (later Paul) who on his way to Damascus met Jesus and was blinded. After his sight was restored, he spent several days with believers in Damascus and, 20 At once he began to preach in the synagogues that Jesus is the Son of God. Of course, this astounded everyone as they knew he had persecuted Christians in Jerusalem and had initially come to Damascus to persecute Christians there.
Nonetheless, 22 Yet Saul grew more and more powerful and baffled the Jews living in Damascus by proving that Jesus is the Messiah. 23 After many days had gone by, there was a conspiracy among the Jews to kill him, 24 but Saul learned of their plan. Day and night they kept close watch on the city gates in order to kill him. They hated him badly enough to want to kill him because he proved Jesus was the Messiah! His followers saved him by lowered him through a window in the wall in a basket.
From there, 26 When he came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he really was a disciple. Finally, he was back in Jerusalem and the believers there could not believe he had really changed! 27 But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles. He told them how Saul on his journey had seen the Lord and that the Lord had spoken to him, and how in Damascus he had preached fearlessly in the name of Jesus. What he had done in Damascus could not be denied. 28 So Saul stayed with them and moved about freely in Jerusalem, speaking boldly in the name of the Lord. 29 He talked and debated with the Hellenistic Jews, but they tried to kill him. Saul, once a persecutor of believers in Jesus, was now sought after so they could kill him for being a believer and a defender of Jesus the Christ. Perhaps they were also afraid if Saul could come to believe then anyone and everyone could and that idea terrified them.
Because they were actively trying to kill him, looking for ways to kill him, 30 When the believers learned of this, they took him down to Caesarea and sent him off to Tarsus. His fellow believers protected him, taking him to Caesarea to send him to Tarsus. With Saul gone, we read, 31 Then the church throughout Judea, Galilee and Samaria enjoyed a time of peace and was strengthened. Living in the fear of the Lord and encouraged by the Holy Spirit, it increased in numbers. Ellicott’s Commentary notes that, The tranquility described may have been due, partly to the absence of any leading men among the opponents of the new society; partly, perhaps, to public excitement being diverted to the insane attempt of Caligula to set up his statue in the Temple at Jerusalem.
Bottom Line: Believers look out for and take care of one another when they are able. Reading through the book of Acts you will see this occur a number of times.
Prayer: Heavenly Father, Your Son said we are to love one another as He has loved us. Help us to truly love one another as He taught us to do. – In Jesus’ Name. Amen.
Riley D. Driver – Pastor
Calvary Chapel of Dayton