Jesus told Saul not to kick against the goad.

Wednesday, 1/25/12
An odd thing about Paul’s story of his conversion on the road to Damascus is that he told it three times in the Acts of the Apostles. It is in Chapters Nine, Twenty-two, and Twenty-Seven. Although he tells the story in almost the same words each time, the last time, in Chapter Twenty-Seven he recalls one detail he left out the other two times. The detail he finally remembered is that the voice from heaven told him, “It is hard for you to kick against the goad.”
A goad is a pointed stick a farmer uses to prod his beast the go the right way. In saying it was hard for Saul to kick against the goad, Jesus was saying that all along while Saul was persecuting the Christians his conscience was telling him he was hurting good people. I say. “his conscience was telling him;” but in bringing the matter up, Jesus was saying that he himself was behind those promptings of Saul’s conscience. When we say, “let your conscience be your guide” we are often really saying, “Let the Lord, speaking through your conscience be your guide.”
I have a personal matter to deal with this January 25. Twenty-five years ago today I officiated at the wedding between Henry and Nanie Papa. At the rehearsal the evening of the 24th we had to wait while some of the wedding party made the trip up from Gainesville. The guests asked if hey could go to confession while we waited; and with twenty Pilipino people making fine confessions I realized that the Philipino people on this side of town are an important part of the Church here. (I later had the privilege of teaching Sarah, Sheena and Henry jr.) I hope Henry srenior is not put out by this, but I’d like to tell a story on him. When I had finished all the confessions the night of the rehearsal, Henry came in. He said, “I don’t need to go to confession, but I want to thank God for Nanie.” 

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