Olsen Park Church of Christ

The Conversion of Saul of Tarsus


Introduction.  This morning I would like for us to consider a most important event in the life of a most important man.  Before Paul the Apostle obeyed the gospel, he was better known as “Saul of Tarsus.”  Yet, something happened to him that changed his life forever—he was converted to faith in Jesus Christ.  If we can learn how he came to Christ, it can help us to see what we must do to do the same.


I.  Background of Saul of Tarsus.

A.  He witnessed Stephen’s death (Acts 7:54-60).

B.  A Pharisee—the “strictest sect” of the Jews (Acts 26:5).

1.  He was the “son of a Pharisee” (Acts 23:6).

2.  He was a Jew from Tarsus (Acts 21:39).

3.  He was a Roman citizen (Acts 22:25-29).

4.  Student of Gamaliel (Acts 22:3).

C.  He persecuted the church (Acts 8:1-3).

1.  “Enraged against them” (Acts 26:9-11).


II. Saul on the Road to Damascus.

A.     On the Road to Damascus (Acts 9:1-5; 22:4-7; 26:12-14).

B.      Saul’s question:  “Who are you Lord?” (Acts 26:15-18; 9:5-7).

1.       “What do you want me to do?”

2.       “You will be told what you must do”

C.      “Things appointed for you to do” (22:8-10). Was Saul Saved at this Point?


III. Saul in Damascus.

A.     In the city of Damascus (Acts 22:11; Acts 9:7-9).

B.      Ananias (Acts 9:10-17; 22:12-15). Was Saul Saved at this Point?

1.       God knew how Saul would serve him.

2.       Ananias declared how he will serve.

3.       He does not say he is saved.

C.      “Arise and be baptized and wash away your sins” (Acts 9:18-22; 22:16-21).

1.       The saved are freed from sins (Matt. 1:21; Rom. 1:16; 6:1-9). This is exactly how Saul was saved.


Conclusion.  There is much about Saul (who became Paul the Apostle) that is unique, but can his conversions serve as an example to us?  Yes.  His conversion is a “pattern” to those after him (1 Timothy 1:12-16).

Kyle Pope 2010

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