The Little Man
9 Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Spirit, set his eyes on him,
10 And said, O full of all deceit and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?
11 And now, behold, the hand of the Lord is upon thee, and thou shalt be blind, not seeing the sun for a season. And immediately there fell on him a mist and a darkness; and he went about seeking some to lead him by the hand.
After his inner transformation on knowing the Lord, Saul was called as Paul by the people and this incident records the first time he was called as Paul. The conversion started in Acts 9 and Saul was called Paul in Acts 13, people may think it happened in a short time but one historian puts that it took 8years between Acts 9 and Acts 13. Yes it took 8 years for Saul to become the Paul of the people.
What may further surprise most is when they get into the meaning of the names. Saul means desire and Paul means little or small.
No one will keep a name Small to a person who is tall in height, or Fat to a person who is slim. But Paul was no dwarf or really short like Zacchaeus that people needed to call him little, if it was so then the Bible would have described him like it did to Zacchaeus and many others. So Saul may have been slightly short but that was not the main reason they called him little, the main reason was great spiritual stature in this little body. The great speed at which Saul started spiritually grew that he left behind the very people who were instruments in building and nurturing him in his initial spiritual stages. Apostle like Peter consulted him for his great knowledge of scriptures. Paul was later counted among the 5 pillar apostles who looked after the total Church operations.
In the Spiritual world there is no permanent teacher or leader or guide other than the Lord (Holy Spirit). Even though Jesus was perfect and full of the Holy Spirit yet as man handed over His disciples unto the Holy Spirit. It was the Holy Spirit who opened their minds to the real understanding of what Jesus told them.
Barnabas was instrument in building Paul in his initial spiritual days in the Lord, later we see Paul grew more than Barnabas and at times was instrument in correcting Barnabas when he erred.
There are some principals in the Kingdom of God if one is not moving ahead one is back sliding, for the Kingdom of God is always on the move. Also no man has permanent leadership; a teacher can become a student of his own student if the student grows spiritually more than his teacher. So no man should have pride in oneself in the Kingdom of God or should look at oneself as to what one has achieved but should always look forward to the goal which we need to reach and should help any and every one that is lacking behind us.
This kingdom of this world always desires to drag us back and bring us to nothing, so our spiritual walk is like climbing up an escalator which is going down. Since we are in the opposite direction we need to climb up faster than the speed at which the escalator is going down. If we keep going at the same speed up and we are pulled down we are not going ahead but will be at the same spot, but if we slow down we start to slowly backslide without knowing. Therefore Paul states our spiritual life is a race not a walk. If this world increases in speed (corruption and evil) then we too need to push ahead spiritually at greater force.
Let us be like Paul the little man in whom the people saw a great man pushing ahead in his spiritual race.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, we pray we grow faster than the rate at which the world pulls us down. That we breakthrough the bondages that hold us back and grow at speed like Paul or even more for the work now is greater than the work then...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference ]
1 And Jesus entered and passed through Jericho.
2 And, behold, there was a man named Zacchaeus, which was the chief among the publicans, and he was rich.
3 And he sought to see Jesus who he was; and could not for the press, because he was little of stature.
4 And he ran before, and climbed up into a sycomore tree to see him: for he was to pass that way.
5 And when Jesus came to the place, he looked up, and saw him, and said unto him, Zacchaeus, make haste, and come down; for to day I must abide at thy house.
Matthew 23:8 - But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your teacher, and all ye are brethren.
Colossians 1:19 - For it was the good pleasure of the Father that in him should all the fulness dwell;
Colossians 2:9 - for in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily,
1 Corinthians 9:24-27
24 Know ye not that they that run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? Even so run; that ye may attain.
25 And every man that striveth in the games exerciseth self-control in all things. Now they do it to receive a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.
26 I therefore so run, as not uncertainly; so fight I, as not beating the air:
27 but I buffet my body, and bring it into bondage: lest by any means, after that I have preached to others, I myself should be rejected.
Hebrews 12:1 - Therefore let us also, seeing we are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
Galatians 2:9 - and when they perceived the grace that was given unto me, James and Cephas and John, they who were reputed to be pillars, gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship, that we should go unto the Gentiles, and they unto the circumcision;
John 14:26 - But the Comforter, even the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said unto you.
John 15:26 - But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall bear witness of me:
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