Saul was a chosen vessel. On the road to Damascus to persecute Christians, Christ confronted Saul and revealed Himself. It was this authentic revelation of Jesus in Saul’s life that caused an immediate revolution in Saul’s heart. Saul saw the light. He was forever changed. The old things had instantly passed away, and everything became new. Saul was delivered and God had determined to use this man to be the instrument that would, in effect, change the world.
Saul’s previous life had prepared him for this moment. He was born into a Roman family and thereby a citizen of the most powerful nation of its time. The Roman Empire was noted for its commerce and trade over land and sea, it provided the best schools and learning institutions of its day and the privileges of society were unmatched and only offered to its citizens.
Specifically, Saul was born into a Jewish family of the Diaspora. In other words, as a Jew, Paul was familiar and in touch with secular society. He knew the Greek language, identified Greek logic and understood the influence of Greek culture upon the lives of men. Saul had a clear perspective of the world.
Being a Jew, Saul had a number of insights into the lifestyle of God’s people. Saul was brought up in the synagogue. He had a working knowledge of the Scriptures. For as long as Saul could remember, he had been taught the traditions of old. Even though he had a Greek intellect, he had the training of a rabbi and was inducted into the elite Jewish ruling counsel known as the Sanhedrin.
Now everything was different. Everything was new. Yet God would use all of these personal experiences of Saul to fulfill His sovereign plan. Clearly, Saul was chosen by God to do an extraordinary work of ministry.
Much could be said about this man Saul. I could identify his character and his conduct in order to learn from his example. Excluding Christ, one could argue that there has been no better man to ever walk this earth than Saul. Saul has an amazing story; Saul the murderer of the faithful becomes a miracle of faith. This man that purposely persecuted the church prior to his conversion eventually would proclaim the hope of Christ in like passion. God ultimately elevated Saul well beyond his own comprehension to a place of legendary status within church history. Humanly speaking, Saul would author half the New Testament writings. Therefore, it can be said that no man would make any greater contribution, have any greater influence or be of any greater value to the world than this man Saul.
Clearly Saul was someone special which had something special, but what about the rest of us? Those of us that will never be center on the world’s stage, do we have anything substantive to offer? Does it really matter what we do with our life?