The conversion of Saul
If Saul was converted and he was then it’s up to us to know conversion as he knew it, for if he was converted and became one of those “of the way” then he as one of the disciples sets the pattern and example of our salvation also.
In order to discover Sauls conversion let us first seek to find his conversion experience and what sort it was. Was Paul saved by raising a hand and repeating a prayer? or was he saved like the disciples and those in Acts? We have to get salvation right, not the charismatic way or the pentecostal way or the new way or any way but THE WAY.. yes that’s what it was called by Paul, who himself went about persecuting those of the way. “The way” speaks of the only ways the way of the Lord. and of the lord himself as “The way” Himself both salvation and deity, a person and an event. Only Jesus, as the Way can be person and an event, God and man, deity and Savior.
“Jesus is become our salvation” his very name tells us he is both an event and a person.
In (Acts 9)And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.
Notice he was a persecutor of “those of the way”
3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me? 5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.8 And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought him into Damascus.9 And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.10 And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I am here, Lord.
11 And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth,12 And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting his hand on him, that he might receive his sight.13 Then Ananias answered, Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem:14 And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name.15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name's sake.17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized..(Acts 9:1-18).
Saul was not converted the day he met Jesus. The day he met Jesus, the Lord said to him “arise and go into the city and it shall be told the what thou must do” (Acts 9:6).
He met Jesus but he was not saved. Many in the bible days met Jesus and yet were not saved in fact no one was saved until acts. As acts took place and began after the resurrection and after salvation which was purchased through the shed blood of Christ. Without the shed blood there could not be remission of the sins of a man.
So what was it that he Saul “had to do?” In verse ten of Acts 9 we read that the Lord appeared to a disciple called Ananias, God told him what to do and then he said Go thy way for he is a chosen vessel. Saul received his salvation three days later. Note how he was fasting and praying during these three days (Acts 9:11). Ananias came to him and prayed for his healing and that he might receive his sight and be baptised with the Holy Ghost (Acts 9:17) And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales and he received his sight forthwith and arose and was baptised (Acts 9:18)Saul received his sight and was healed. He was baptised in the name of Jesus and received the Holy Ghost in one event one one day in one hour.
FULL SALVATION IN ONE EVENT IN ONE DAY IN ONE HOUR
No wonder he preached the ONE LORD ONE FAITH and ONE BAPTISM. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of us all, who is above all and through all and in all." Ephesians 4;4-6).Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4;12).So Saul took on the ONE NAME of the ONE LORD and came into the ONE FAITH through the ONE BAPTISM.
The one we meet in “the way.”
In Acts 22;9-16 we read.2 And one Ananias, a devout man according to the law, having a good report of all the Jews which dwelt there,13 Came unto me, and stood, and said unto me, Brother Saul, receive thy sight. And the same hour I looked up upon him.14 And he said, The God of our fathers hath chosen thee, that thou shouldest know his will, and see that Just One, and shouldest hear the voice of his mouth.15 For thou shalt be his witness unto all men of what thou hast seen and heard.16 And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
I like that’ “Now” Right there and then. 'That same hour' (v13) he received his sight, was baptised for the washing away of sins (v16) which is water baptism and filled with the Holy Ghost (Acts 9:17).the same hour he was baptised in water he was filled with the Holy Ghost and received his miracle restored sight. We ned that a kind of salvation. That’s true salvation. Since NOW is the only appointed time then Lord it all NOW. So we see the pattern, Saul was baptised just as the early Jews were on the day of pentecost. In fact we should correctly say what he was born of water and Spirit as were the Jews before him, the same way, in the same manner as Peter had declared. In Acts 2:38. Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptised every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.(Acts 2:38).
Saul was a Jew, his parents were Jews, the Jews were saved in acts 2. the gospel given to the Jews was this, repent and be baptised every one of you in thee name of Jesus for the remission sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38) Acts two where salvation comes to the Jews. Saul’s salvation followed the same pattern as the Jews before him. He preached this death burial and resurrection salvation (1 cor 15;1) It was a Jew who took salvation to the gentiles. Some say it was Paul. I disagree, it was Peter who took salvation to the gentiles first, then later Paul took to them the same gospel message of (Acts 2:38).
conclusion: Paul was not saved by raising a hand or asking Jesus into his heart he was saved the way Jesus taught it and the way Peter preached it. (John 3;5 acts 238) This too should be our way for it’s the only way to eternal life of him whose names the way.