Another Open Insider
At SBI we were studying the Book of Proverbs and I made the comment that Solomon was the Ben Franklin of Old Israel. I even mentioned a couple of the famous Franklin sayings popularized in Poor Richard’s Almanac: “a stitch in time saves nine,” and “early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.” I got blank stares.
After class Johnny, my TA for the past five years, put his arm on my shoulder and said, “We’ve got to get you some good African American proverbs like ‘every closed eye ain’ sleep and every goodbye ain’ gone’ and ‘don’t take no wooden nickels’.” The wisdom passed on from grandparents to their children. Johnny was gently telling me that for this audience, Ben Franklin was not my man.
In our Devos we saw how God used Ananias, an insider among the believers up in Damascus, to bring Saul, the outsider into their group. When Saul returned to Jerusalem, the place where he had imprisoned and executed followers of Jesus, he had even bigger problems. He desperately needed another insider to help him connect with the Jerusalem apostles and believers. The Lord had just the man.
“When he came back to Jerusalem, Saul was trying to connect with the followers of Jesus, but all of them were afraid. They didn’t buy in to the fact that he was now a follower of Jesus.
Now Barnabas got him and brought him to the Apostles and told them, how on the way to Damascus, he had seen the Lord, that the Lord spoke to him, and how he then spoke boldly in the Name of Jesus in Damascus.
So Saul was able to come and go with them speaking boldly in the Name of the Lord. He was speaking and debating with the Hellenistic Jews, and they were trying to kill him. When the brothers discovered the plot they led Saul to Caesarea and he departed for Tarsus, his home city.” - Acts 9:26-30
LORD, what a turn around. Saul supported the Hellenistic Jews in their stoning of Stephen and now you have Saul taking his place. Thanks that nothing can stop the spread of the Good News and also for men like Barnabas and Ananias willing to take the risk to bring an outsider and lead him inside.
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