Witness to a murder


“Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their coats at the feet of a young man named Saul… And Saul approved of their killing him.” (Acts 7:58b, 60b)

Who could have known that the Saul, who approved of Stephen’s murder, would become another strong witness for Jesus, as a man named Paul. Saul would go from murderer to martyr a few years hence. But before that miraculous transformation Saul would do real damage to the followers of Jesus. We have no idea of the number of believers he arrested, persecuted or may have killed. He was a violent man doing what he felt God wanted him to do, stamp out this heresy about Jesus.

Religious fervor is applauded by many. They feel that a zealous attitude is confirmation of a sincere faith. But that sincere faith can be wrong, and it can erupt into violence. Saul was sincere, there is no doubt, but he was wrong. Our sincere faith in Jesus comes with conviction but also with an attitude the religious community of Saul’s time had not seen. An attitude of humility and love. Saul tried to kill love. He failed, just as anyone who tries to kill our faith in Jesus will fail. His love through us never fails.

Heavenly Father, some of us can identify with Saul. We have opposed Jesus. We have spoken or acted against His followers. We have been zealous in this, but we discovered we were wrong. We repented and came over to His side. Thank You Father for that transformation to see Jesus for Who He is, our Savior and Lord.

In His name. Amen.

Pastor Robert Forsberg is retired from Light of Christ Lutheran Church in Fairborn.

No posts to display