After the Jewish leaders martyr Stephen for his faith, the Pharisee Saul goes on a rampage. He seeks to arrest Jesus’s followers and threatens to kill them. To avoid persecution, Jesus’s squad scatters. Saul chases them. He goes to Damascus with authorization to seek out people who follow Jesus, both men and women, and drag them as prisoners back to Jerusalem.
On the way there, Saul encounters Jesus and is blinded as a result. Unable to see for three days, Saul fasts.
During this time, Jesus appears in a vision to the disciple Ananias. “Go find Saul, for he is praying. He’s expecting you to come and heal him, so he can see again.”
Ananias isn’t so sure. “I’ve heard about this guy and all the damage he’s caused to your people in Jerusalem. Now he’s come here to do the same thing.”
“Go!” God says. “It’s all part of my plan.”
Ananias goes, places his hands on Saul, and says, “Jesus who appeared to you on the road has sent me, so you can see again—and be filled with the Holy Spirit.”
As if a blindfold is removed, Saul can see again. He gets up and is baptized.
Despite facing arrest and the possibility of execution if Saul captures him, Ananias obeys God and does what seems foolish.
Are we willing to risk death to obey what God tells us to do?
[Discover more about Ananias in Acts 9:10–19 and Acts 22:12.]
Read more about other biblical characters in The Friends and Foes of Jesus, now available in e-book, paperback, and hardcover.
A lifelong student of the Bible, Peter DeHaan, PhD, wrote the 1,000-page website ABibleADay.com to encourage people to explore the Bible. His main blog and many books urge Christians to push past the status quo and reconsider how they practice their faith in every area of their lives.