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Faithlife

One of the Greatest Gifts God Has Given

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Seeing God to Exhalt Him Above All

Notes & Transcripts

Introduction

Pay strict attention to the contrast between the tangible and the intangible, between the outward physical and the inward spiritual, between the human realm and the divine realm.
Pay strict attention to the smallest details - they too are a significant part of the perfect divine revelation.
Why? The issues here are a matter of life and death, of sanctification and perishing.

What really happened on that road? Two Questions...

Acts 26:12–15 ESV
“In this connection I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me. And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.
Acts 26:12–18 ESV
12 “In this connection I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. 13 At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me. 14 And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ 15 And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting. 16 But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, 17 delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you 18 to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
Acts 26:12-18
Acts 26:12–15 ESV
12 “In this connection I journeyed to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests. 13 At midday, O king, I saw on the way a light from heaven, brighter than the sun, that shone around me and those who journeyed with me. 14 And when we had all fallen to the ground, I heard a voice saying to me in the Hebrew language, ‘Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me? It is hard for you to kick against the goads.’ 15 And I said, ‘Who are you, Lord?’ And the Lord said, ‘I am Jesus whom you are persecuting.
Acts 22:10 ESV
10 And I said, ‘What shall I do, Lord?’ And the Lord said to me, ‘Rise, and go into Damascus, and there you will be told all that is appointed for you to do.’
Acts 22;

But..... Everything potentially changes at this point in Saul’s life!

Saul is to be a slave of God, sacred, sanctified, committed to the life God directs;
OR
Acts 26:16–18 ESV
16 But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, 17 delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you 18 to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’
Saul will hate the light and love the darkness.

Seeing God’s Glory always leads to a crisis -

John 3:18–21 ESV
Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment: the light has come into the world, and people loved the darkness rather than the light because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his works should be exposed. But whoever does what is true comes to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that his works have been carried out in God.”

For 3 days and nights, this was Saul’s struggle.

Acts 26:16–17 ESV
But rise and stand upon your feet, for I have appeared to you for this purpose, to appoint you as a servant and witness to the things in which you have seen me and to those in which I will appear to you, delivering you from your people and from the Gentiles—to whom I am sending you
Acts

Baptism in the context of the blood of the new covenant - cf

Ba
Acts 22:16 ESV
And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.’
Romans 6:22 ESV
But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life.

Summary

1. Saul of Tarsus was determined to destroy the Way.
2. Saul saw Christ Jesus in His glorified state becoming blinded by the light of His glory!
3. The two questions: Who and What.
4. The purposes of Christ revealing Himself to Saul:
a. To appoint Saul as a servant
b. To appoint Saul as a witness
c. To deliver Saul from his people
d. To deliver Saul from the Gentiles
e. To send Saul to the Gentiles
5.

Is this the pattern or is it the exception?

4e1. to open their eyes.
OR
Saul will hate the light and love the darkness.

Is this the pattern or is it the exception?

The foundation to the answer -

2 Corinthians 3:1–3 ESV
Are we beginning to commend ourselves again? Or do we need, as some do, letters of recommendation to you, or from you? You yourselves are our letter of recommendation, written on our hearts, to be known and read by all. And you show that you are a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts.

Saul was blind and could not see the light of the gospel, thus he was lost and perishing. The preaching of the gospel once believed removes the blindness and the response of faith opens the vision to the transformative beauty of God.

Which has greater force? The approval of men writing with ink the endorsement upon paper OR the covenant of Christ written with the Spirit of God on the tablets of human hearts.

The problem -

2 Corinthians 4:3–4 ESV
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

The glory of Christ - splendor, beauty, amazing

The solution -

2 Corinthians 4:6 ESV
For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

The response -

2 Corinthians 4:5 ESV
For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake.

The pattern -

Acts 26:18 ESV
to open their eyes, so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.’

The effect -

2 Corinthians 3:18 ESV
And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.

[The glory of Christ, the glory of God, and the glory of the Lord]

Let Us See It Now and Reveal It Always

Elements of the Glory of Christ, God, the Lord:

The Majesty of God (greatness in all His attributes)
God Unchanging
God’s Wisdom
God’s Righteousness
God’s Love
God’s Grace and Mercy
God’s Justice
God’s Wrath and Severity
God’s Goodness
God’s Longing and Jealousy
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