Acts 9

Meanwhile Saul, still breathing out threats of murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and begged of him letters addressed to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any that were of the Way, either men or women, he could bind them and bring them to Jerusalem. And as he journeyed, when he was approaching Damascus, suddenly a light from heaven flashed round him. He fell to the ground, and heard a voice which said to him, "Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?" And he said, "Who are you Lord?" "I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting," he said. "Stand up and go into the city, and there you shall be told what you must do." Meanwhile the men who were his fellow travelers stood speechless, hearing indeed the voice, but beholding no one. And Saul got up from the ground, but although his eyes were open, he continued to perceive nothing; so they took him by the hand and led him into Damascus. And he remained there three days, seeing nothing, and without eating or drinking.

10 Now there was in Damascus a disciple named Ananias, and the Lord spoke to him in a vision, saying, "Ananias!" And he answered, "Lo, I am here, Lord." 11 And the Lord said to him. "Arise, go into the street named ‘Straight,’ and make inquiries in the house of Judas for a man of Tarsus, one Saul. 12 He is now praying, and has seen a man named Ananias enter and lay his hands on him to restore his sight." 13 "But, Lord," said Ananias, "I have heard from many about that man, and how much evil he did to the saints at Jerusalem! 14 "In this city, too, he has authority from the chief priests to arrest all those who call upon thy name." 15 "Go," answered the Lord, "this man is chosen instrument of mine to bear my name before the nations and their kings, and before the Children of Israel also; 16 "for I am going to show him all he has to suffer for the sake of my name." 17 And so Ananias went and entered into the house, and laying his hands on him, said, "Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, who appeared to you on your journey, has sent me that you may receive your sight, and be filled with the Holy Spirit." 18 Instantly something like scales fell from his eyes, and he received his sight. He arose and was baptized. 19 Afterward he took food and was strengthened. And he remained for some time with the disciples at Damascus. 20 And he began at once to proclaim in the synagogues Jesus as the Son of God. 21 His hearers were all astonished, and began to say. "Is not this the very man who in Jerusalem made havoc of those who called upon the Name? Did he not come hither for the express purpose of carrying them all in chains to the high priests?" 22 But Saul gained more and more influence, and kept putting the Jews who lived in Damascus to confusion by his proof that Jesus was the Christ.

23 And when many days were fulfilled the Jews made a plot to kill Saul; 24 but information of their plot was given Saul, and although they kept watch day and night on the gates, in order to make away with him, 25 his disciples took him by night, and let him down over the wall, lowering him in a basket. 26 So he came to Jerusalem, and attempted to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, because they did not believe that he was a disciple. 27 But Barnabas took him and brought him to the apostles, and told them how Saul had seen the Lord in the way, and that he had spoken to him; and also how he had preached the Name of the Lord Jesus boldly at Damascus. 28 Henceforth Saul was one of them, going in and out of the city, and speaking fearlessly in the Name of the Lord. 29 He also used to hold conversations and debates with the Grecian Jews, but they kept trying to kill him. 30 When they learned this the brothers took him down to Caesarea, and then sent him forth to Tarsus. 31 Now throughout the whole of Judea, Galilee, and Samaria the Church continued to enjoy peace and to be spiritually built up. It was increasing in members also, as it kept walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit.

32 Now Peter, as he was going from town to town, came down also to the saints who lived in Lydda. 33 Here he found a man named Aeneas, bedridden for eight years, a paralytic. 34 Peter said to him. "Aeneas, Jesus Christ cures you! Rise and make your own bed!" 35 At once he rose to his feet. All the people of Lydda and Sharon saw him, and they turned to the Lord.

36 Among the disciples at Joppa was a woman named Tabitha - which may be translated Dorcas or "Gazelle" - a woman whose life was full of good works and almsgiving, which she was doing continually. 37 She, as it happened, was taken ill just at that time, and died. After washing her body, they laid it in an upper room. 38 And as Lydda was near Joppa, the disciples, when they heard that Peter was there, sent two men to him with the entreaty, "Delay not to come to us." 39 So Peter arose and went with them. On his arrival they took him up- stairs, and all the widows stood near him, weeping, and showing him the cloaks and garments which Dorcas used to make, while she was still with them. 40 But Peter put them all out, and kneeled down, and prayed; and then turning to the body, he said, "Tabitha, rise!" She opened her eyes, and on seeing Peter she sat up. 41 Then he gave her his hand and raised her up, and after calling the saints and the widows, he gave her back to them alive. 42 This incident became known throughout Joppa, and many believed in the Lord. 43 Peter stayed for some time in Joppa, lodging in the house of Simon, the tanner.

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