Acts 9 Commentary

Please choose a passage:

Acts 9:1-9

Saul the Pharisee continues his aggressive campaign against believers. He sets out on a journey to Damascus in Syria to arrest any disciples of Jesus there. When he has almost arrived to his destination, a light from heaven flashes and knocks him down, blinding him. The voice of Jesus asks Saul why he is persecuting Him. Saul goes into the city, still blind, and does not eat or drink for three days.

Acts 9:10-19a

Jesus speaks to a believer in Damascus named Ananias, telling him to go to Saul and heal his blindness. Ananias understandably hesitates, since this Saul is famously persecuting the church, and had arrived in Damascus with the intention to arrest believers, bind them, and take them away to Jerusalem. Jesus tells Ananias that Saul has been chosen to spread the gospel and suffer for His sake. So Ananias obeys. He puts his hands on Saul, and Saul’s sight returns. Saul is baptized.

Acts 9:19b-25

Saul immediately begins preaching in Damascus that Jesus is the Son of God and the Messiah. Everyone is amazed. They knew Saul beforehand as a persecutor of believers, and now he was a believer himself. Some of the Jews in Damascus plot to kill him for his betrayal, but he catches wind of this and escapes the city by night.

Acts 9:26-31

When Saul returns to Jerusalem, the other disciples reject him for a time out of fear. But the charitable and generous disciple Barnabas befriends Saul and takes him to the apostles. They learn of his vision of Christ on the road, and his ministry in Damascus. Saul begins preaching throughout Jerusalem. Soon the Greek-speaking Jews plot to put him to death, so the apostles send Saul away to his hometown of Tarsus.

Acts 9:31-35

A time of peace for the church begins. Peter visits many of the churches throughout Israel. In the town of Lydda, Peter heals a paralyzed man named Aeneas. Seeing this disabled man now walk, all who live in Lydda and the surrounding area believe in Jesus.

Acts 9:36-43

There is a believer in the coastal city of Joppa named Tabitha. She is well known to be charitable and kind. But she falls ill and dies. The disciples of Joppa send for Peter, who is not far in the town of Lydda. He comes to Joppa and prays for Tabitha. He tells her to arise, and she wakes up from death. Her resurrection becomes well known throughout the city, and many believe in Jesus because of it. Peter remains in Joppa for a time.