Gospel Gazette Online
Volume 20 Number 12 December 2018
Page 13

What Color Was Saul’s Horse?

Raymond Elliott

Raymond ElliottThe following are questions in the New Testament regarding the conversion of the biblical character Saul, who was a persecutor of the “Way” (Acts 22:4). Turn to the basic texts in the Book of Acts pertaining to Saul of Tarsus. Read the verses without my input about those Scriptures. You can read for yourself what the writer Luke (Acts 1:1; Luke 1:1-4) wrote as he was guided by the Holy Spirit. Here are the passages: Acts 9:1-19; 22:1-16; 26:1:26.

The question may be asked, “Did Saul, in fact, obey this command (cf., Romans 6:1-4)?” Please notice the plural pronouns “us” and “we,” which would include Paul (Saul of Tarsus) who wrote the Book of Romans (1:1).

Oh, I have not dealt with the question that is the title of this article, “What color was Saul’s horse?” You know, that is a very interesting question. I have seen pictures and videos of Saul riding a horse on the way from Jerusalem to Damascus. However, would you believe, there is no passage of Scripture that informs us he was even riding a horse? Study God’s Holy Word and believe what it teaches and disregard fanciful additions or alterations of Scripture.

The City that Earned Its Reputation

Aaron Cozort

Nazareth was a city in the land of Israel in the first century A.D. It was a city of little significance until it became the home of a particular child. Nazareth is the place where he grew in knowledge, education, physical skills and spirituality. Yet, this city had a bad reputation. The reputation of Nazareth was given by Nathanael when he said, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” (John 1:46).

The character of Nazareth was proverbially bad. To be a Galilean or a Nazarene was an expression of decided contempt (John 7:52). Nathanael asked, therefore, whether it was possible that the Messiah should come from a place proverbially wicked. This was not an uncommon mode of judging. It was not a matter of examining evidence but an occasion of prejudice (Albert Barnes’ New Testament Commentary).

While Nathanael’s statement may have been proverbial, and his judgment prejudiced, consider that in the case of Nazareth, another proverb may fit. “Where there is smoke, there is fire.” The Nazarites were the first ones to attempt to kill our Lord. Long before the Pharisees and the Chief Priests decided that Jesus had to die, the “religious Jews” in the synagogue in Nazareth tried to throw Jesus off a cliff. “So all those in the synagogue, when they heard these things, were filled with wrath, and rose up and thrust Him out of the city; and they led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city was built, that they might throw Him down over the cliff. Then passing through the midst of them, He went His way” (Luke 4:28-30).

What caused this great wrath among the Nazarites? What brought them to the point of grabbing Jesus and manhandling Him to the top of the cliff to kill Him? Jesus would declare several things to those in Nazareth.

  1. He was the Messiah.
  2. Their own prejudice would keep them from hearing and obeying Him.
  3. He would not perform the miracles He did in other places in Nazareth.
  4. They as a people were a contrast to Gentiles in the days of the Prophets who heard, believed, loved and obeyed the prophets and who were blessed thereby.

They were Jews. They were descendants of Abraham. They were the people of God—or so they thought. Yet, like many, they wanted their kind of Savior and not God’s kind of Messiah. They had a bad reputation, and they certainly deserved it. Has prejudice colored your eyes? Have you earned a reputation for evil?

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