No, not really. He believed in God, but didn’t know who Christ was. Unlike many who do neither, Paul’s Damascus road experience wasn’t a conversion, but in reality, it was more along the lines of the call of a prophet. For me, I don’t think that the Parting of the Ways occurred at Pentecost, nor anytime there after.
The book to your left is one of those provided for our Wednesday evening church class on Romans. Tonight, we will be tackling the first chapter of it and while I am tempted to give you the reading assignments, etc… I won’t. I mean, they have several of those books for a penny (plus 3.99 in shipping).
However, one of their points is that Paul wasn’t a convert. He wasn’t. He was still a Jew, but he was introduced to the Son.
But even before I was born, God chose me and called me by his marvelous grace. Then it pleased him to reveal his Son to me so that I would proclaim the Good News about Jesus to the Gentiles.When this happened, I did not rush out to consult with any human being. (Gal 1:15-16 NLT)
Compare that with Romans 1.1:
Paul, a bond-servant of Christ Jesus, called as an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, (Rom 1:1 NASB)
Paul believed in YHWH, but though the experience of God’s calling, he was introduced to the Son and set apart to reveal the Gospel. His eyes were opened, you might say, but I don’t think he changed religions.
Also, because chapter 1 is uber-controversial, I will be bringing my post on Paul’s rhetorical device in the first few chapters.
As I did with Ruth, no doubt I will be posting a few things tomorrow on tonight’s discussion.