All my Christian life people have told me Paul never met Jesus during his ministry. I have somehow instinctively never quite believed it. Why you ask? The main reason is psychological. Paul was driven by such hatred to persecute christians it seems hard to believe he hadn’t met the object of his fury. I suspect Paul had met Jesus, indeed I wonder whether many of Luke’s Pharisee encounters were actually told to him by Paul.
It seems bizarre to me that Paul who was a bright young pharisee (who also seems to have been a member of the Sanhedrin) would not have sought out Jesus to debate with him. Paul seems likely to have been in Jerusalem at the time as he would presumably have been trained as a pharisee. According to this quote seems to have lived in Jerusalem since being a youth having presumably been born in Tarsus.
Acts 26:4-5,9-10 “My manner of life from my youth, spent from the beginning among my own nation and in Jerusalem, is known by all the Jews. 5 They have known for a long time, if they are willing to testify, that according to the strictest party of our religion I have lived as a Pharisee……
I myself was convinced that I ought to do many things in opposing the name of Jesus of Nazareth. 10 And I did so in Jerusalem. I not only locked up many of the saints in prison after receiving authority from the chief priests, but when they were put to death I cast my vote against them.”