Monday, January 25, 2010

Bible quiz!

Today Catholics and some other churches celebrate the conversion of St. Paul on the road to Damascus. It is one of the most famous episodes in the Acts of the Apostles, and here is a little Bible quiz for today.

1) Was Saul/Paul knocked off his horse on the road to Damascus?

Despite all the paintings, scripture does not say whether Paul was riding a horse or not. Acts 9:3-4 just says he was traveling to Damascus and fell to the ground. Artists, like Parmiagino, usually had him struck from a horse for a variety of reasons. It added drama and implied action to the work , for example, whereas a painting of a man lying in the middle of the road might look too static.

2) Did Paul see Jesus on this occasion?

In Acts 9:3 Paul is said to see a light from heaven and hears a voice that identifies itself as Jesus. In Paul’s account in Acts 22:7-8, we find the same thing. Again, artists often portrayed a figure of Jesus visible within the bright light from above for dramatic purposes.

3) Did Paul’s companions see anything?

Trick question! Acts 9:7 says “though they heard the voice they could see no one.” Acts 22:9 says they “saw the light but did not hear his voice as he spoke to me.”

4) Did his companions hear anything?

Again, Acts 9:7 says they heard the voice; Acts 22:9 says they did not.
Anyway, happy feast of St. Paul! In the Carmelites, this used to be a special feast for the brothers who were not priests, so a happy feast to them in particular.


Joseph said...

Well, you can take the man out of the monastery and the Church, but you can't take.... (O, never mind!) ;-)

Michael Dodd said...

Ain't it the truth? But then, I was there from the time I was 22 until I was 54 ...