A Changed Heart like Paul the Apostle
in Devotionals on
Introducing the Humble Apostle Paul
This time approximately 20 years ago, I was introduced by my uncle to the faith of Christianity. At that time, I was still young… very young… focusing on learning how to sing the multiplication song to ensure I could graduate from second grade and collecting Pokemon cards to accomplish one of my biggest achievements at the time.
As time passed by, Pokemon was still an ongoing obsession (not to mention about the release of Pokemon Go a few years ago). However, I also learned to pick up a few new obsessions, such as being organized (I mean like all the time!) and reading fanfiction and the Bible. All thanks to my uncle for introducing the Bible to me. Although it took me a few slow years to enjoy reading the Bible, I am glad that I eventually learned to fall in love with it.
Difference between Fanfiction and the Bible
The world of fanfiction and the Bible are very colorful. Writers of fanfiction consumed their minds with much creativity and imaginations that they could even come up with cool characters just by putting on their thinking cap for 72 hours. However, do you know what’s cooler about the Bible? It’s not that the air conditioning is on, but it’s because whatever God plans, He will speak of them and make them come true. What’s so amazing is that not only God has this kind of personality; Jesus possesses it too. And, who else? They are the many hard-working disciples and apostles with one of them, for instance, being Apostle Paul.
So, who was Apostle Paul?
Apostle Paul was a very hard-working person, who was an important figure in the Bible. He was not only someone who was greatly educated and fervent at what he did, but he was someone who put his passion into practice. In Acts Chapter 22 of the Bible, Apostle Paul described himself as a Jew who could speak in Aramaic. However, what made him interesting was that he was born in Tarsus of Cilicia as a Roman citizen who was trained under his teacher, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel.
Furthermore, in Philippians Chapter 3, Apostle Paul boasted about himself as someone who was circumcised in the flesh when he was an eighth day-old infant, a Hebrew of Hebrews from a tribe in Israel called the tribe of Benjamin, and a hard-working, zealous Pharisee who threatened, imprisoned, and persecuted the early Christians. Who could boast about themselves better than Apostle Paul about himself? I believe this is none, except for Apostle Paul himself.
Apostle Paul’s Change
Did anyone know that Apostle Paul’s other name was Saul? Saul was not only a name of a king in Israel in the Old Testament, but it was also Apostle Paul’s other name (Acts 13:9). Saul was his Hebrew name, and Paul was his Roman name. After he was chosen by Jesus mentioned in Acts Chapters 9, 22, and 26 and received the revelation of Jesus Christ mentioned in Galatians Chapter 1, he was still very hard-working and zealous about what he did. However, he was no longer someone who mistreated and persecuted the early Christians. He became one with Christ, fervently and diligently testifying to the words of Jesus Christ so that the people who he testified to could have a chance to believe in Jesus Christ and be saved.
In 2 Corinthians Chapter 11, Apostle Paul boasted about himself again but as a fool. The reason why Apostle Paul boasted about his weaknesses was to show the glory of Christ and how Christ changed him and worked through him as his messenger as mentioned in 2 Corinthians Chapter 12. Although Apostle received much persecutions and went through much sufferings while he was carrying out his ministry work, he gladly accepted them just to show how Jesus was the one working through him to make all his work possible.
How Significant was Apostle Paul?
Apostle Paul was a very influential figure in the past. Today, there is no difference. In fact, he is still very influential and impactful in so many ways, especially in the lives of Christians. Apostle Paul wrote almost half of the New Testament. Today, as the Bible is the best-selling book of all times, many people are still reading his writing.
Reason Why I am writing about Apostle Paul
I am writing about Apostle Paul not because how smart and educated he was in the perspective of the world, but it was because he considered everything he possessed in the past before meeting Christ as rubbish in order to gain Christ in him through the true knowledge and faith in Christ as mentioned in Philippians Chapter 3. Regardless of how small and humble or how big and boastful the flesh could be, Apostle Paul had a lot to throw away about himself. Although it was difficult, he was eventually able to throw his past away, especially the wrongdoings that he did and the wrong teachings he believed in. Compared to him, we don’t have much to throw away in order to gain Christ. Besides, Apostle Paul was not saying to throw away our bank accounts, our college degrees, or our good-looking boyfriends.
We are very blessed to not have to live a life like how Apostle Paul or any other disciples and apostles did. Let’s learn the heart and mentality of Apostle Paul by gaining the true knowledge and faith in Christ inside of us. Let’s walk with God and Christ together. In Matthew Chapter 7, it says that this road is a narrow road but is a road that leads to life. Disciple Peter confessed that Jesus has the words of eternal life in John 6:68. Jesus mentioned in his prayer to God that eternal life can be obtained by knowing the true God and His one and only beloved son, Jesus Christ. God has desired “all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:3-4). Let’s share the same desire as God and Jesus Christ! What’s so bad about it?
Capturing the Heart
Just like how I would like to capture all of my readers’ hearts right now, the Bible has captured mine. Have I captured yours?