Michael Jeshurun 

When presented with the method of salvation of God’s people in the scriptures whether it be Lydia or Paul, the haters of Sovereign Grace and the Total Depravity of man always retort saying, “Oh but those were stray instances you are quoting. Yes the Lord may have opened Lydia’s heart (Acts 16:14) to believe, but the rest of us are required to open the door of our own hearts and accept Christ! Yes the Lord arrested the Christ hating Saul of Tarsus and made him a Christian almost against his will, but the rest of us are required to choose Christ by exercising our own free-will!”


Here’s what the Apostle himself says of the Lord’s dealings with him – “This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that IN ME first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, FOR A PATTERN to them which should hereafter believe on Him to life everlasting.” [1Tim 1:16,17]

Read that again in case you didn’t get it the first time! The salvation of Paul and the Lord’s ongoing dealings with him was not a stray or unique experience restricted to the Apostle, but A PATTERN of God’s dealings with every Tom, Dick and Harry and Jane, Jill and Mary who would hence forth believe and be saved!

While not every elect who are to be saved are Christ haters and a persecutor of Christian’s like the Apostle was, notwithstanding every single one of them comes into the world as an enemy of God hating the light and loving the darkness! The Apostle makes this plain when he reminds the Ephesian converts – “For if, WHEN WE WERE ENEMIES, we were reconciled to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life!” [Rom 5:10]

You’ve got to put this in your pipe and smoke it whether you like it or nor that the conversion of Paul was no stray instance as some haters of Sovereign Grace propose . . . but a ‘PATTERN’ of the salvation of EVERY SINGLE BELIEVER TO COME – i.e. an enemy of Christ: arrested, made willing and irresistibly drawn by Sovereign Grace! Praise the LORD!

Here are some thoughts from the beloved Spurgeon on this –

“IT is a vulgar error that the conversion of the apostle Paul was an uncommon and exceptional event and that we cannot expect men to be saved now-a-days after the same fashion. It is said that the incident was an exception to all rules, a wonder altogether by itself. Now, my text is a FLAT CONTRADICTION to that notion, for it assures us that, instead of the apostle as a receiver of the long-suffering and mercy of God being at all an exception to the rule, he was a model convert, and is to be regarded AS A TYPE AND PATTERN OF GOD’S GRACE IN OTHER BELIEVERS.

The apostle’s language in the text, “for a pattern,” may mean that he was what printers call a first proof, an early impression from the engraving, a specimen of those to follow. He was the typical instance of divine long-suffering, the model after which others are fashioned. To use a metaphor from the artist’s studio, Paul was the ideal sketch of a convert, an outline of the work of Jesus on mankind, a picture of divine long-suffering. Just as artists make sketches in charcoal as the basis of their work—which outlines they paint out as the picture proceeds—so did the Lord, in the apostle’s case, make, as it were, a picture or outline sketch of His usual work of grace. That outline, in the case of each future believer, He works out with infinite variety of skill and produces the individual Christian, but the guiding lines are really there.

ALL CONVERSIONS are, in a high degree, similar to this pattern conversion. The transformation of persecuting Saul of Tarsus into the apostle Paul is a typical instance of the work of Grace in the heart.



  1. Brother Michael, I trust this short note finds you in good health and your soul prospering as it seems to be doing.

    How is your wife? How are your children doing? Are you on any forums? If so which ones? I’m on this one: under RB

    I’m getting older (70) and all is about the same with me. May God who is gracious above all be so to you and your family RB

    • Good to hear from you after a long silence my dear Brother. Seventy is a good age if you ask me. Not sure whether I will live that long, but then have no desire to either – for more years to me just means more sinning of which I am sick of. One divine it is believed lamented, “Oh that I might be where there is no sin!” And THAT realm is what I believe and even Scripture testifies is Heaven. This is one of the reasons the Apostle confessed that he had a desire to depart and be with Christ . . . which is far better. And I can so relate to him in that.

      Yes, the wife and children are in good health by His grace. But even to this day my two sons do not ‘know the Lord’. And that is my greatest grief. Oh that the Lord may be pleased to reveal Himself to them as He did to me in pure mercy!

      No I am not on any ‘Forums’ dear brother. But I am glad that you are on one and I am sure those forum members are profiting from your knowledge and experience.

      Stay in touch and write as time permits. My email –


  2. Amen and Amen! Praise the Lord! Loved it! 💝

    Em seg, 3 de set de 2018 às 05:05, escreveu:

    > mikejeshurun posted: ” THE APOSTLE PAUL’S CONVERSION – A PATTERN OF THE > CONVERSION OF EVERY BELIEVER TO COME! Michael Jeshurun When presented with > the method of salvation of God’s people in the scriptures whether it be > Lydia or Paul, the haters of Sovereign Grace and” >

  3. I love this because this has been a point of contention between me and my Sunday School teacher who I dearly love. His stance has always been that Paul must have felt some guilt over Stephens death because surely Jesus would never save someone against their will.

  4. Reblogged this on And Then Messiah Shall Come and commented:
    Maria, I have pondered this article for some time now, and it grieves me in my heart to have men called Grace haters who take every word of God seriously, ponder it, study it, and apply it as God in His grace allows. The Apostle Paul tells us to make our calling and election sure. This word of God to us, too, is because of God’s grace, for were we to have no part in the acceptance of so great a salvation we would need no such admonition, but should we have even the most minor part of exercising belief in God’s word manifest in His Son; then this admonition cannot be left out, for to do so would place our calling in Great jeopardy. Abraham believed God and it was accounted unto him as righteousness.
    I’m sure that you are aware that faith, without which we cannot please God, is not only a gift to us from God, but it is also a fruit of the Spirit. Jesus told us to abide in Him otherwise we cannot bear fruit, and if we do not bear fruit — faith being a fruit, we will be cut off as a branch which bears no fruit to be cast into the fire and burned. David said take not Thy Holy Spirit from me, why? — without His Holy Spirit fruit ceases. And though it is true that that fruit cannot be produced without Him, it is also true that if we do not abide in Him, believe in Him, as the word of God who He is, then we can bear no faith. Make your calling and election sure. As Paul also said: “In pointing out these things to the brethren, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which you have been following. for bodily discipline is only of little profit, but godliness is profitable for all things, since it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come. Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you, which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery. Take pains with these things; be absorbed in them, so that your progress will be evident to all. Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you.
    1 Timothy 4:6,8,14-16
    My only question to you is this — if Paul’s meaning as understood by by you Michael is as he states it why is Timothy’s own salvation and that of his hearers dependent upon his doctrine and teaching?

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