Acts 9:26-30
Acts 9:26 (KJB)
And when Saul was come to Jerusalem, he assayed to join himself to the disciples: but they were all afraid of him, and believed not that he was a disciple.
Assayed - Made an effort or attempted
Saul had now made his way back to Jerusalem and attempted to join with the other disciples. His absence of three years did not erase the memories of the disciples who knew what he had done to the Christians and what he attempted to do. The disciples had thought that somehow he was trying to make believe he was a disciple so he could gather information on them and names for indictments. I am sure Saul had tried to convince them that he was truly converted by telling them what happened to him on the road to Damascus. These believers were wise to be cautious because they could once again be in danger of persecution by Saul. I guess if our worst enemy was saved, we too would be cautious about immediately accepting them without testing them to see if they were really converted.
Acts 9:27 (KJB)
But Barnabas took him, and brought him to the apostles, and declared unto them how he had seen the Lord in the way, and that he had spoken to him, and how he had preached boldly at Damascus in the name of Jesus.
Barnabas was originally from Cyprus and had come to Jerusalem to study under Gamaliel. This means that there is a possibility that Barnabas knew Saul before his conversion. This would have been an excellent situation because Barnabas would have been able to know first hand the difference in Saul being unsaved and now being saved. Barnabas had apparently investigated the situation because he knew the details of Saul’s conversion. He told them that Saul had seen the Lord on the road to Damascus and he personally spoke with the Lord. Then Barnabas had told them that Saul was preaching the true Gospel in the synagogues of Damascus and no doubt he told that the Jews there wanted to kill Saul for preaching this message. The name Barnabas means “son of encouragement” and his name fit him well as he encouraged the disciples to accept Saul as one of the true brethren.
Acts 9:28 (KJB)
And he was with them coming in and going out at Jerusalem.
Saul was now accepted as one of the disciples and had accompanied them to different places but it looks like in this verse that Saul also had gone other places to preach the Gospel which probably would have been synagogues in surrounding areas. Now Saul was able to get first hand information about the Lord Jesus Christ from those who actually walked with Him while He was on earth. It would have been a time of great learning for Saul.
Acts 9:29 (KJB)
And he spake boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus, and disputed against the Grecians: but they went about to slay him.
Disputed - Debate, discuss, or reason
Since Saul was a citizen of Tarsus located in modern day Turkey on the Mediterranean Sea he had an affinity to the Greek speaking Jews. This verse tells us that Saul had tried to speak to them about the Lord Jesus Christ but their attitude was like those in Jerusalem and Damascus, they wanted to kill him. These were the same Jews who had a problem with Stephen. Saul went to their synagogues to debate them and found great opposition to the true Gospel.
Acts 9:30 (KJB)
Which when the brethren knew, they brought him down to Caesarea, and sent him forth to Tarsus.
They had found out about the plot to kill Paul so what they did was to bring Saul to Caesarea Philippi which was just south of the Syrian border. From there he was dispatched as a representative of the Gospel. He was not sent to Tarsus to escape the death threat but was sent because Tarsus was a free city and had a University there which meant many teachers. It is said the only two cities that outshined Tarsus in the area of education was Athens and Alexandria in Egypt. Now we know why Saul had such a tremendous base of knowledge because he must have studied there, right in his home town.