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CHAP. XXVI.

The Acts of PAUL the Apostle, his Travels and
Sufferings, bis Life and Death.

1QWHO was Paul?

A. He was a Jew of the Tribe of Benjamin, born at Tarfus; his Name at firft was Saul, he was brought up in the ftrict Sect of the Pharifees, a Man of good Morals, and exceeding zealous of the Traditions of the Fathers, As xxiii. 9. and xxi. 39. Phil. iii. 5, 6. Gal. i. 14. Acts vii. 58.

2 Q. What was his Behaviour towards the Chriftians while he continued a Pharifee?

A. He was a very great Perfecutor in his younger Years, he made Havock of the Church every where, fending Men and Women to Prifon, and he encouraged those who ftoned Stephen, Ats viii. 1, 3. and vii. 58.

3 Q. How came he to become a Christian? A. As he was going to Damafcus, with Orders from the High Priest to bring all the Chriftians he could find there bound to Jerufalem, he was ftruck down on the Road, by a Blaze of Light from Heaven, As ix. 1—3.

4 Q. Did he hear any Voice at the fame Time? A. A Voice from Heaven faid to him, Saul, Saul, why perfecuteft thou me? I am Jefus, whom thou perfecuteft, ver. 4, 5.

5Q. What Effect had this upon Saul?

A. He trembled and cried out, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord bid him, arise, and go to the City of Damafcus, and there he fhould be told his Duty, ver. 6.

6 Q. Did Saul obey this divine Vision?

A. He rofe from the Earth, and found that he was ftruck blind, and he was led by the Hand into

Damafcus,

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Damafcus, where he was three Days without Sight and without Food, and engaged much in Prayer, ver. 8-11.

7Q Who was fent to teach him his Duty there? A. Ananias, a Disciple, was ordered by the Lord in a Vifion to go to him in the House where he lodged, and to restore his Eyefight, ver. 11, 12. and to tell him what Honour and Duty God had appointed. for him.

8Q. Did Ananias go willingly on this Errand? A. He was at firft afraid to go, because he had heard of his cruel Perfecution of the Chriftians; but the Lord affured him that Saul would receive him, because he had given Saul also a Vifion of one Ananias to prepare him for his coming, v. 10, &c. 9 Q. How did Saul recover his Sight?

A. Ananjas laid his Hands upon him, and he received hi Sight, and was filled with the Holy Ghoft, and was baptized, ver. 17, 18.

10Q. Who appointedSaul at firft to be a Preacher? A. The Lord Jefus ordered Ananias to tell him, that God had chofen him to know his Will, to fee Jefus, and to be a Witnefs for Chrift to the World, As xxii. 14, &c. And fome Time after that, Christ himself in another Vision sent him to preach to the Heathen Nations, ver. 21.

Note here, In St Paul's Rehearsal of this Matter to Agrippa. Acts xxvi. 16, &c. Chrift himself is reprefented as giving Paul his firft Commiffion from Heaven to the Gentiles at this Time: Yet it has been questioned whether the Apostle does not in this Rehearsal join together all that Chrift faid to him, both in his firit Vifion upon the Road to Damafcus, and his fecond Vifion at Jerufalem in the Temple, when he was more exprefly fent to the Gentiles, Acts xxii. 17, 18, 21. but this is too large a Debate to be affumed here.

11 Q. How did Saul employ himself after this wonderful Appearance?

A. He was a few Days with the Difciples at Damafcus, and he foon preached Chrift in the Synagogues, that he is the Son of God, to the Amazement of them that heard him, ver. 19-22.

12 Q. How came he to learn and preach the Gofpel fo foon?

A. It is generally fuppofed that he was taught the Gospel by Jefus Chrift himself in the three Days of his Blindness, for he declares he learnt it not from Men, Gal. i. 1, 11—16.

13Q. Where did he preach the Gospel when he went from Damascus ?

A. In Arabia, and he returned again to Damafcus, and did not go up to the Apostles at Jerufalem till three Years after, Gal. i. 17, 18.

14 Q. When he returned to Damascus how did the Jews bear with him?

A. They watched the Gates Night and Day to flay him; but the Difciples took him by Night, and let him down by the Wall in a Basket, Acts ix. 23-25 and 2 Cor. xi. 32, 33.

15 Q. When he came to Jerufalem, how was he received by the Disciples?

A. They were all afraid of him, because he had been fo great a Perfecutor of the Chriftians but a very few Years before, ver. 26.

16 Q. How were they perfuaded to believe that he was now a Difciple of Christ?

A. Barnabas brought him to the Apostles, and gave an Account of Chrift's calling him from Heaven, and his preaching boldly at Damafcus in the Name of Jefus, ver. 26, 27.

17 Q. Who was Barnabas ?

A. A Levite of Cyprus, whofe Name was Jofes, who was a zealous Difciple of Chrift, and a Preacher of the Gospel, whom the Apostles furnamed Barnabas, that is, the Son of Confolation, Acts iv. 36.

18 Q. Did Saul preach Chrift at Jerufalem ? A. Yes, with great Courage; but the Grecians, (that is, the Hellenift or Grecian Jews) fought to flay him, and then the Brethren perfuaded him to retire to his native Place, Tarfus in Cilicia, Acts ix. 28-30.

19 Q. What was that other Vision which he had of Chrift when he was at Jerufalem?

A. As he was praying in the Temple he saw the Lord, who affured him that the Jews would not receive his Witnefs concerning him, and bid him depart from Jerufalem, for that he would fend him to the Gentiles, As xxii. 17—21.

Note, Though this Account of Paul's feeing Chrift in the Temple of Jerufalem, feems here immediately to follow the Account of his Converfion, Acts xxii. 16, 17. yet fome think he had not this Vifion till the fecond Time of his coming to Jerufalem. 20Q.Whither was Barnabas fent by the Apostles? A. When they heard of the great Success of the Gofpel in foreign Countries, they fent him as far as Antioch in Syria to confirm the Difciples, Acts xi. 22-24.

Note, The great Succefs of the Gofpel at this Time, was partly among the Jews who refided in other Countries, and partly the Jewish Profelytes of the Gate, or the devout Perfons, and fuch as feared God, Acts x. 17. and chap. xiii, 16, 50.

21 Q. Whither did Barnabas go when he left Antioch?

A. He went to Tarfus to feek Saul, and brought him to Antioch, where they fpent a whole Year together, and there the Difciples were first called Christians, Acts xi. 25, 26.

22 Q. What farther Commiffion had Barnabas and Saul to preach the Gofpel to the Gentiles?

A. The

A. The Holy Spirit appointed the Prophets and Teachers at Angioch to separate Barnabas and Saul to the Work to which he had called them, that is, to preach to the idolatrous Gentiles, which they did by Fafting, Prayer, and laying on their Hands,

Aets xiii. 1-3

23 Q. Who was their Afiftant or Attendant in this Journey?

A. John Mark, Nephew to Barnabas, Aas xii. 25. and chap. xiii. 5. Col. iv. 10.

24 Q. What Opposition did they meet with when they came to Paphos in Cyprus ?

A. When Sergius Paulus, the Governor of the Country, sent for them, that he might hear the Word of God, Elymas a Jew, who was a false Prophet and a Sorcerer, withstood them, in order to prevent the Governor from believing, ver. 6—8.

25 Q. How was Elymas punished for this Crime?

A. Saul (who from this Time is called Paul in Scripture) Itruck him blind with his Word, upon which the Governor believed in Christ, v. 10–12. Note, From Paphos they went to Pamphylia in Asia,

and there John Mark returned to Jerusalem, and left Paul and Barnabas, ver. 13.

26Q. Where were the next remarkable Labours of Paul and Barnabas?

A. Paul preached in the Synagogue of the Jews at Antioch in Pisidia, where he proved Jesus to be the promised Saviour, and published his Death and Resurrection, and Forgiveness of Sins through his Name, Aets xiii. 14–41.

27 Q. What Effect had Paul's Preaching upon the inhabitants of that City ?

1. Many of the Jews, filled with Envy, contradicted the Words of Paul, and blasphemed Christ; upon which Paul declared, that since the Jews re

jected

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