Acts 9 Outline
– Saul obtained letters from the high priest to capture the Jewish Christians (Acts 9:1-2)
– God appeared to Saul while he was on the way to Damascus (Acts 9:3-6)
– Saul became blind and the men accompanied him led him into Damascus (Acts 9:7-9)
– God commanded Ananias to pray for Saul (Acts 9:10-16)
– Ananias prayed for Saul and Saul’s eyesight was restored and Saul got baptized and regained his strength after eating some food (Acts 9:17-19)
– Saul preached the gospel in Damascus for a number of days (Acts 9:20-22)
– The disciples helped Saul escaped by lowering him in a basket through a wall opening to Jerusalem (Acts 9:23-25)
– The disciples in Jerusalem were afraid of Saul but Barnabas spoke up for him (Acts 9:26-27)
– Saul preached the gospel and debated with the Grecian Jews in Jerusalem (Acts 9:28-29)
– The disciples helped Saul escape to Tarsus (Acts 9:30)
– The church in Judea, Galilee and Samaria enjoyed peace and was strengthened and encouraged by the Holy Spirit (Acts 9:31)
– Peter visited some saints in Lydda (Acts 9:32)
– Peter healed a paralytic named Aeneas and many people come to faith of Jesus Christ in Lydda (Acts 9:33-35)
– Peter raised to life a kind woman named Tabitha in Joppa and many people believe in Jesus Christ after that (Acts 9:36-42)
– Peter went to live with Simon, a tanner in Joppa (Acts 9:43)
Acts 9 Summary
Meanwhile, Saul was still persecuting the Christians. He had asked the high priest for letters of permission for him to go to Damascus and capture the Jewish men and women and put them in prison in Jerusalem. While he was near Damascus, a bright light shone down from heaven around him and he became blind. He heard a voice asking why he is persecuting him. Saul responded by asking who he is. The voice replied that he is Jesus, whom he is persecuting. The voice instructed Saul to go into the city of Damascus and do what he is told.
The men who accompanied Saul heard a sound but they didn’t see anyone. Saul opened his eyes and discovered that he couldn’t see anymore. The men led Saul by hand to Damascus. Saul did not eat or drink for 3 days until a man named Ananias come to lay hands on him and pray and restored his eyesight.
God appeared to Ananias in a vision and instructed him to go to the house of Judas on Straight Street and ask to see a man called Saul. God had shown Saul in a vision of Ananias coming to lay hands on him and restored his eyesight.
At first, Ananias was reluctant to go. He complained to God about how Saul was persecuting the Christians but God said Saul is the one he has chosen to bring the gospel to the Gentiles and Israelites. Ananias obeyed God’s command and he prayed for Saul. After Ananias prayed, Saul felt something like scales fell off his eyes and he was able to see again. After Saul’s eyesight were restored, he got baptized. He ate some food and was refreshed.
Saul spent a number of days with the disciples and preached the gospel in Damascus. The people were surprised to see Saul preaching the gospel because he used to persecute the Christians. Later, the Jews plotted to kill Saul and they watched the city gates day and night, waiting for an opportunity to kill him. Saul’s followers helped him to escape by lowering him down in a basket through a wall opening.
When Saul was in Jerusalem, the disciples were afraid of him but Barnabas spoke up for him. Barnabas told the people about the appearance of Jesus to Saul on the way to Damascus and how he had boldly preached the gospel to the people. Saul stayed with the disciples and he debated with the Grecian Jews about the faith. This arouse the anger of the Grecian Jews and they attempted to kill him. Then, the disciples brought him to Caesarea and sent him on his way to Tarsus.
There was peace at the church in Judea, Galilee and Samaria. The church was strengthened and was encouraged by the Holy Spirit. The numbers of Christians converts increased as well.
One day, Peter visited Lydda to see some saints. While Peter was in Lydda, he saw a paralytic man named Aeneas, who had been bedridden for 8 years. Peter told Aeneas that Jesus Christ has already made him well and he instructed him to take care of his mat. At this, Aeneas stood up and was able to walk. Many people who lived in Lydda and Sharon converted to Christians after this.
In Joppa near Lydda, a kind woman called Tabitha, also known as Dorcas, who had done a lot of good deeds for the people fell sick and died. Her body was washed and put in the upstairs room. The disciples knew Peter was near Joppa so they sent two men to call him to come. Peter was taken to the upstairs room.
The widows stood around Dorcas, holding the clothes she made for them. Peter knelt down to pray and commanded the dead woman to rise up and she did. Then, Peter presented Dorcas alive to the believers and widows. Many people, w ho had heard about the miracle Peter had done came to the faith of Jesus Christ. After that, Peter went to live with Simon, the tanner in Joppa.
Acts 9 Bible Study
1. God can speak to us directly
God spoke to Saul when he was on his way to Damascus. We can speak to God directly and God can speak to us directly also. There is no need to depend on another person such as a priest to intercede on behalf of us to God. You can talk to God yourself in prayer and God can speak to you personally as well. When you pray, you should start with Dear Lord Jesus Christ, Dear Father God or Dear Holy Spirit and end with in Jesus name I pray (John 14:13). The Holy Spirit can speak to us. He is the still, small voice in your heart that will speak to you from time to time. The Holy Spirit lives in us after we have accepted Jesus Christ as our savior (1 Corinthians 6:19). The Holy Spirit will guide you and help you to walk in God’s plan (John 14:26).
2. God leads us step by step in his plan
Saul submitted to God and asked him what he wants him to do (Acts 9:3). Often, when we pray, we tell God how he is supposed to help us. Instead of giving God directions on how to do things, we should humble ourselves and be submissive to him and let him guide us through the problems. In 1 Chronicles 16:11, we should seek God and his strength and his face continually. In Psalm 25:9, God guides the humble in what is right and teach them his way. In Psalm 25:12, God will instruct the man who fears him in the way he should choose. In Psalm 32:8, God said he will instruct and teach his people the way they should go. He will counsel and watch over us. In Psalm 37:4-9, delight yourself in God and commit your way to him and he will make you prosper. In Philippians 2:13, it is God who works in you according to his will and for his good pleasure.
3. God can use anyone
Saul persecuted the Christians enthusiastically before he was converted. God can use anyone regardless of what you have done in the past, race, background, skin color and etc. In 2 Timothy 2:20-21, in a large house, there are articles of gold, silver, clay and wood. Some articles are for noble purposes while others are for ignoble purposes. If the latter cleanses himself, he can be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy and useful for God to do any good work.
4. God is faithful even when we are faithless in him
The conversion of Saul shows that God finds the lost, even when they are not looking for him. In 2 Timothy 2:13, God is faithful even when we are faithless in him. In 1 Timothy 2:4, it is God’s will for everyone to receive eternal life and be saved. It is part of God’s plan that we come to the church or meet someone and get to know about Jesus Christ. God arrange the circumstance and situation in our lives in a way that will lead us to him. In John 6:37, Jesus will never drive away all that the Father gives him.
5. God breaks us so that he can fill us
God break Saul by striking him blind. Then, God revealed himself to Saul and Saul now believe in Jesus Christ. When we are proud, God will break us and humble us so that he can fill our lives. Saul experienced a physical blindness for 3 days before Ananias came to pray for him and restored his eyesight. When Ananias prayed for him, he felt something like scales fall off his eyes. Saul used to have spiritual blindness and cannot see the truth. Now, after the vision, he is no longer spiritually blind and he can see the truth and he now believes in Jesus Christ. When you humble yourself before God, God will life you up (1 Peter 5:6).
6. Be fervent in serving God
After Saul was converted, he immediately started to serve God and preached the gospel. Although he was being persecuted by his enemies, he continue to preach the gospel to the people. Every Christian must serve God in some way. It is the responsibility of every Christian to preach the gospel (1 Corinthians 9:16). You should share the good news of the gospel to your family members, friends, co-workers and other acquaintances. Each of us has a spiritual gift from the Holy Spirit and we should use our spiritual gifts to serve one another, as stewards of God’s grace so that Jesus can be glorified (1 Peter 4:10-11). In Mark 9:35, Jesus said he who want to be first in the kingdom of heaven must be the least and a servant of all. In Mark 10:44-45, Jesus said whoever that wants to be first must be a slave of all. For Jesus did not come to be served but to serve others.
7. There is power in the name of Jesus Christ
By the name of Jesus Christ, Peter healed Aeneas and raised Dorcas to life from the dead. There is power in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 16:18; Acts 3:6-8). If you believe in Jesus, you can command in Jesus name anything and it will be done for you. Peter performed the two miracles for the good of others, that others may come to the faith in Jesus Christ as well.