Intro to the New Testament Essay 4 Explain why Paul is often considered second only to Jesus in his contribution to Christianity. To understand Paul and why he is regarded so high as to be put only second to Jesus is bewildering to some. We must first though understand Pauls’ background and his overall divine message he is trying to portray to understand why he is regarded as he is. Paul, whom was born in Cilicia, was named also Saul which means “asked for”. He was brought up from a fairly rich Jewish family. Which if you were a foreigner in Roman lands it was a requirement to be wealthy.
Paul had to start learning the scriptures at the age of five and had to take full obligation of the law at thirteen. I believe Him coming from this wealthier family and having the chance at such a profound education helped him with his later writings in his text. Paul was a unmarried man and spent most of his years preparing for his ministry and was the last apostle to the Gentiles. What made him famous throughout his ministry were his four missionary journeys and he wrote much of the New Testament. Paul eventually ended up beheaded by Nero in Rome at AD 67.
Paul never knew Jesus; in fact he even at one time persecuted Jesus’ disciples. Paul claims though he received a apokalypsis (revelation) of Christ risen and it transformed his life. He claims that Jesus’ himself revealed to him the one true Gospel. This of course created distinction between him and the other apostles. It has been documented that he frequently argued with his close companions and other various groups. I can see why there is such distinction, because he was never present with Jesus’ himself like those disciples of the past and he claims to receive the true Gospel personally from Jesus.
Text and Traditions: Work Requirement One Historical Reconstruction Major events in Jewish history to the first century AD 1250 BC Fall of Jerusalem to the Romans. 931 BC Divided Kingdoms. 721 BC Fall of Samaria. 587 BC Fall of Jerusalem, Babylonian captivity. 333 BC Jews under Hellenistic rule. 63 BC Jews under Roman rule. 70 AD Fall of Jerusalem to the Romans. Major events between 50 BC - 100 AD ...
Due to the harshness of his colleagues his missionary fields were far from established religious areas as possible. Paul found it easier to spread his word to people whom have not been tainted by other views yet. Regardless of what the other apostles though however this shaped the way many Christians envisioned Christianity. Paul is revered as a great Christian thinker, but in his text he never seems to stray to far away from his Jewish decent. He always stressed the common relationship between Judaism and the new religion.
He believes Christianity is revealed through Jesus’ ministry, but is defined by the Hebrew bible. He continuously throughout his writings uses scriptures from the Hebrew bible to validate something in his particular Gospel. Before his call from Jesus’ Paul was a member of the Pharisee party, he obeyed the Torah everyway possible. He was so zealous in his obedience and to prove his loyalty to Pharisaic Judaism he even persecuted those who believed that Jesus was the Jewish Messiah.
It is hard to comprehend how a person so zealous against Jesus and his disciples can turn around and be that zealous for Jesus another moment after receiving a message. It is documented so that he was in fact just as zealous before Jesus appeared to him as he was afterwards. Paul claimed that he was Gods’ instrument in which he was to carry out his divine will. He indeed did a great service, for he successfully implanted the religion in non-Jewish territories and established the first churches of Europe. In conclusion I believe you can basically break down Pauls’ life into two Pauls’.
The first Paul is the Paul that was a zealous Pharisee who brutally maltreated the first Christians and their beliefs. Compared to the second Paul whom received divine messages from Jesus, rewrote the New Testament, and spread the word all over to non-Jewish territories and established the first churches of Europe. This is in which why Paul is revered as second only to Jesus’. I believe Paul single handily alone, with such zealous temper and even under persecution altered the way Christians looked at faith.
Scholars do not operate in a vacuum, but within the frameworks of their communities, traditions, commitments, and beliefs. Their scholarship, even when specialized, develops within a larger picture of reality. So we must ask: What is in that larger picture Is there a place for God If so, does God's presence make any difference to the rest of the picture Does that presence change the relative ...