January 27, 2005

The Pharaoh – Saul of Tarsus by John Roden

Pharaoh, king of Egypt, hated the people of God – so did Saul of Tarsus (Act 9:1). Pharaoh sought to kill the people of God – Saul of Tarsus was hell-bent and determined to persecute and kill all the disciples of Christ (Act 22:4-5). Pharaoh said, “Who is the Lord that I should obey His voice to let Israel go?” (Exd 5:2) – Saul of tarsus believed Jesus of Nazareth was a fake and an imposter, and held the clothing of those men who stoned His disciple Stephen to death as Stephen called upon God, saying “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit” (Act 7:58-59). Pharaoh dropped into Hell under the waters of the Red Sea (Exd 14) – Saul of Tarsus was unhorsed on the road to Damascus, conquered and subdued by the manifested glory and marvelous grace of the risen, exalted, and glorified Lord Jesus Christ (Act 9:3-19). He later changed his name to Paul, was called to be an Apostle of Christ, and eventually wrote at least 13 books of the New Testament! God said of Pharaoh: “Even for this same purpose have I raised thee up, that I might show My power in thee…” (Rom 9:17). The same said of the murderer Saul of Tarsus, upon his conversion: “He is a chosen vessel unto me.” (Act 9:15). The only thing that made the difference in these two men was the sovereign grace of God – one vessel of wrath prepared for destruction, the other was a vessel of mercy, prepared beforehand for glory (Rom 9:22-23)

Exert from John Roden ‘The Sovereign Grace of God in Salvation’