Paul was famous in Israel for being pious and theologically adept. While spearheading the Christian persecution initiative, God effectually called Paul into Christ’s kingdom. His conversion occured en route to and within Damascus. Immediately after being strengthened by the assembly there, he began to preach Christ, laboring some in Arabia. Three years following his conversion, Paul made way to Jerusalem. He had little progress with the church there until Barnabus vouched for him, vindicating his conversion testimony. Paul acquainted the apostles, especially Cephas and James. Being ever zealous to preach Christ, he also journeyed through Syria to Cilicia, coming near Derbe. At this time he likely became acquainted with the church in Antioch. But consent arose among the Hellenistic Jews in Jerusalem to kill him. The church caught wind of the plot and smuggled him to Phillip in Caesarea, who sent him along to Tarsus (Paul’s hometown). After some time, Paul came to Antioch and made fellowship with the body there. He and Barnabus were then sent out by this church to preach Christ in Asia Minor. Fourteen years after first stepping foot in Jerusalem to befriend the apostles, Paul returned to the city for the defense of the Gospel against their errors.
Acts 9, 13-14; Galatians 1:11-2:10