Read: Acts 9:10-18
So Ananias departed and entered the house. And laying his hands on him he said, “Brother Saul . . . ” (v. 17)
One commentator calls Ananias “one of the forgotten heroes of the Christian church” (William Barclay, The Acts of the Apostles). Indeed he is! The fact that he referred to Saul as “brother” gets to the very heart of the Christian faith. It shows what happens to people when they believe in Jesus: they start to live like him.
Obviously Ananias was being asked to do something quite intimidating. Meeting with Saul, the one who had gained a reputation as a persecutor of Christians, would have never have occurred Ananias on his own. He was risking his life in going to see this man. But once again the Lord intervened by telling Ananias that Saul was praying! Ananias’s going was of utmost importance because God would use Saul to be his “chosen instrument” to carry the gospel to Gentiles, kings, and the children of Israel.
So Ananias, not without fear and trepidation, went, and he greeted the former persecutor of the church with those beautiful words, “Brother Saul.” What a welcome that was! God had brought together as brothers two men who until that day had been enemies.
God is still in the business of reconciliation and forgiveness. And he wants you to be an Ananias in this day and age as well. —John Koedyker
As you pray, ask God to show you someone whom he wants you to embrace as a brother or sister.
About the Author
Rev. John Koedyker has been a pastor in the Reformed Church in America for more than forty years. His ministry began in Japan where he served as a missionary for ten years. After that he has served churches in Iowa and Michigan. He has served as the Stated Clerk of Muskegon Classis, RCA, for the past sixteen years and also presently serves as pastor of congregational care at First Reformed Church of Grand Haven, Michigan. John has written a number of times previously for Words of Hope and he has a bi-monthly religion column in the Grand Haven Tribune. He is married to Marilyn, and they have four grown children and seven grandchildren.