Being called to preach the gospel will also catch the eye of the enemy. Isn’t that how it goes? You set out to do the work of the Lord. To evangelize or share the gospel. You are commissioned, and with the commission comes the opposition. You can’t have one without the other. If you have learned anything from my teaching, it is this: Betrayal creates promotion, and rejection creates advancement.
Paul and Barnabas are invited to a governor’s home. But for some strange reason, there is another guest. A fly in the ointment. A heckler and harasser. A sorcerer. But God is about to use the foolishness of a false prophet to advance the kingdom. As Elymas, the sorcerer interferes with the message of the gospel; Paul has had enough. My favorite line in this chapter is this very verse- Acts 13:9-Saul, also known as Paul, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and he looked the sorcerer in the eye.
He looked the harasser, the hazer, the opposer, the heckler in the eye and then says, in verse 10, “You son of the devil, full of every sort of deceit and fraud and enemy of all that is good. BOOM! Paul declares the sorcerer will be struck blind and will not see the light of day. This is the moment that the governor believes. The blinding of the enemy opened the governor’s eyes. Not because of a sorcerer bumbling around but because the governor was astonished at the teaching of the Lord. Oh, that our words of grace and authority blind the enemy and draw the sinners. Oh, to have such confidence to look the devil in the eye and tell him to go to hell.
The chapter continues with Paul and Barney evangelizing, and converts were won, but not without opposition. The leaders were jealous, and they slandered Paul and argued against whatever he said. Yet, and it’s a big YET, Paul and Barnabas spoke boldly, regardless of the Jewish leaders' rejection, because the Gentiles were glad to hear the message and thanked the Lord for the message.
So the next time you feel the pressure of the enemy, look Him in the eye and say, “Go to hell.” Because this chapter proves the commission will have opposition, and the opposition nurtures courage to speak boldly.