July 4th 2009

The Faith Of Ananias

4 of 12 Studies taken from Acts 7 to Acts 14

“Now there was in Damascus a disciple named Ananias.  The Lord said to him in a vision, ‘Ananias’.  And he answered, ‘Here am I, Lord’.  And the Lord said to him, ‘Get up and go to the street called Straight and ask at the house of Judas for a man of Tarsus named Saul, for behold, he is praying [there]. And he has seen in a vision a man named Ananias enter and lay his hands on him so that he might regain his sight’.

But Ananias answered, ‘Lord, I have heard many people tell about this man, especially how much evil and what great suffering he has brought on Your saints at Jerusalem; Now he is here and has authority from the high priests to put in chains all who call upon Your name.’

But the Lord said to him, ‘Go, for this man is a chosen instrument of Mine to bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the descendants of Israel’… So Ananias left and went into the house.”
Acts 9:10-17 (AMP)

It took a very special man to deal with the broken Saul. Ananias was “a devout man according to the Law, well spoken of by all the Jews who resided there” (Acts 22:12), and, above all, a man of faith who trusted in Jesus Christ.

God had not revealed to Ananias how Saul had been blinded by the light of Christ. All Ananias knew was that he was being sent to meet and bless this infamous enemy of the gospel.

I love the way Ananias questions God’s idea. But God, don’t you know the facts? We can do that sometimes. We wonder whether God knows all the pros and cons. Do you really know what you are doing, Lord? God, of course, has a bigger picture. More is happening that we can see. This is what God explains to Ananias, that there is more going on than meets the eye.

It could have been a trap for Ananias. He could have gone to Straight Street and found himself arrested. Was Ananias thinking such thoughts? We don’t know. What we do know is that, despite such fearful possibilities, Ananias did what God told him to without further discussion. Having laid out his issues before God, he got on with the task in hand, not understanding fully the immediate outcome.

Ananias’ actions sound a bit like faith to me. Bold enough to present his concerns but ready to do what God wants no matter what.

Prayer
Father, help me to admit my concerns to You and to get on with following Your Son despite uncertainty and fears. In Jesus’ name.
Amen

Study by James Henderson

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