The Significance of the Calling of Paul the Apostle
A research paper submitted to Dr. Craig Miller
In Partial Fulfillment of the requirements For
Liberty University Online
March 9, 2013
Table of Contents
A Look into Saul’s Past- 2
Jesus Confronts Saul- 4
Paul’s Life and Teachings- 5
the Death of Paul the Apostle- 6
1. A look into Saul’s past.
A Roman citizen born to Jewish Parents.
Saul was well known for persecuting Christians.
2. Jesus Confronts Saul.
The trip to Damascus.
What happened to Saul?
The change in Saul.
3. Paul’s Life and Teachings.
The people’s reaction to Paul’s sudden change.
Paul referred to as an apostle.
The radical change in Paul to the type of person he once persecuted. 4. The Death of Paul.
Paul comes full circle through his martyrdom.
The legacy one of the most influential men of history left behind. 5. Conclusion.
A summary of the life, calling, and death of Saul of Tarsus.
The calling of Saul of Tarsus was phenomenal in many aspects. From his past, to his life and teachings, Saul of Tarsus is one of the most intriguing and shocking people of history. Born a Roman citizen to Jewish parents, Saul grew up to become a well-known persecutor of the primitive Christian faith. Saul still puzzles the world with one of the most shocking pivotal points in history – his conversion to the faith he so adamantly tried to stomp out. A Look into Saul’s Past
Saul was born a Roman citizen to Jewish parents in the city of Tarsus, which today sits in the country of Turkey. Saul was a Pharisee like his father. He grew up as any Jewish boy would have – studying the scriptures. He completed his studies under the teachings of Gamaliel the Elder, the leading authority in the Sanhedrin during that time. Saul knew the scriptures; his theological knowledge is displayed repeatedly throughout the letters he wrote. The name of Saul of Tarsus changes in Acts 13:9. “Then Saul (who also is called Paul)…” Before this verse, he is only ever referred to as Saul. After this verse, he is only referred to as Paul, outside of making references to his former self. Saul is first introduced to us in history through the story of Stephen’s stoning in the Bible. Here Saul is pictured as young; we could even imagine him being authoritative and commanding. Saul is left holding coats as he approves the stoning of a Christian. We meet him first in his natural setting, probably at the beginning of his career of making lessons out of anyone that was part of this heresy against his beliefs. The last time we see this version of Saul is when he is making the journey south into Damascus, which is now the capital of modern-day Syria. From the Damascus road to the end of his life, Saul will no longer be the same. Sean McDonough speaks of Saul’s physical stature, which he was known for because he was “head and shoulders” above the rest. There are secular descriptions of Saul’s appearance as well. It can be assumed Saul was a large man. What is interesting about McDonough’s notes is that Paulus, or Paul, means “little.” McDonough states that Samuel was told by God not to look at physical stature. The name change of Saul to Paul could have been deliberate, though we have no substantial evidence. Jesus Confronts Saul
“The moment of saving faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ has often come as a result of a traumatic personal crisis. This was especially true for a Pharisee in the first century after Christ by the name of Saul of Tarsus, later known as the Apostle Paul.”
Saul’s experience on the Damascus road has been approached from many different viewpoints throughout the years. Saul would have obviously already been familiar with the claims of Christ’s resurrection as he was a persecutor of that...
Bibliography: Bock, D. L. “Acts: a Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament.” Baker Publishing Group Grand Rapids, MI. 2007.
 Harrer, G. A. “Saul who also is Called Paul.” Harvard Theological Review 33, no. 1 (Ja 1940): 19–33.
 Bock, D. L. “Acts: a Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament.” Baker Publishing Group Grand Rapids, MI. 2007.
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