v17: The Holy Spirit brings change into our lives – He takes our chaos and turns it into order (See also 2 Cor 1:21-22, Eph 1:13-14)
v18: Baptism is an action that testifies of our faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Yeshua. It also shows a desire to obey G-d.
v19: Only after being baptized did Saul break his fast and regain his strength. He had been fasting for revelation and had now received it so there was no need to continue fasting.
v20: Mark 14:61-62. The Jews knew the Messiah was coming but they didn’t know His name and they did not know that He was divine (G-d Himself). This was a new revelation to them.
v21: They were astonished as Saul was so radically changed. Saul was wholehearted in persecuting the Christians but that same passion and wholeheartedness was evident when he became a Christian. Wholehearted people make valuable servants of G-d. Lukewarm people show very little passionate commitment to anything (Rev 3:15-16)
v22: When the “Jews” are mentioned in Acts it speaks of the Jewish leadership and not the Jewish people as a whole.
Saul was successful in proving (from the Scripture – the Old Testament) that Yeshua is the Christ.
Something to challenge us?….if we had to present proof from the OT that Yeshua is the Christ/Messiah could we do it?
v23: The leaders of the synagogues could not match the truth of what Saul was teaching and nor were their interpretations convincing – so as a result they wanted to kill Saul.
v24: Matt 24:9
v26: Saul had a bad reputation in the believing community in Jerusalem and they found it difficult to accept/trust his profession of faith.
v27: Barnabas means “son of encouragement.” (see Acts 4:36-37) Barnabas was courageous and got involved in situations where most others would not.
· the L-rd Yeshua (Himself) had spoken to Saul on the road to Damascus.
v28: Saul joined himself to the leadership group of the Apostles in Jerusalem.
v29: First the Judeans wanted to put Saul to death and now the Greek Jews want to do the same thing.
v30: G-d was repositioning Saul. When we are doing the things of G-d (the will of G-d) it will not be long before we encounter opposition. Am I truly in the will of G-d if I never encounter opposition?
v31: To be encouraged (comforted) by the Holy Spirit means that our lives have been restored back to G-d’s original purposes for them. It is in this state (IN Messiah we are seen as Adam and Eve were seen prefall) that the blessings and promises of G-d can be revealed and can be received.
· When we are spiritually mature we are going to walk in the fear of the L-rd. This means we demonstrate G-d’s priority in our lives (He is our chief priority in all that we say and do)
NB A church GROWS when people are strengthened, have a fear of the L-rd and receive comfort (encouragement) from the Holy Spirit