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1:13 persecuted the church of God. Paul’s persecution of the church before his call was well known to the early Christians (Acts 7:58; 8:3; 9:1, 2). Paul himself was profoundly ashamed of this part of his past (1 Cor. 15:9), although he looked on it as evidence that God’s grace can overcome even the most rebellious sinners (Acts 22:4, 5; 26:9–11; 1 Cor. 15:10; Phil. 3:6; 1 Tim. 1:13, 14).