• The religion places it's emphasis on Christ, not Paul. Paul is just another of the story tellers. Ozchrissy: I agree Joe, but there was an argument in here about homosexuality and the comments were all quoting Paul, and his writings are often used to justify narrow minded values, especially about women and sexuality. I believe he was very influenced by his own prejudices and problems, but the churches, especially the Catholic Church have used his writings to justify discrimination for centuries. Would love to have a heated discussion about this, would be interesting to get other peoples views. Geead7: They quoted Paul because he wrote most of the New Testament. Actually, his writings have been used to glorify women as well. Joe-Speedy: Isn't it grand that segments of society can take and glorify any single aspect of the historical documents and make it true for that social segment? Interpretations on the writings will differe depending on the reader. Historians are the people I believe when it comes to stuff like this. They are for the most part, religeously impartial. Some believe that Mary was a virgin by occupation, and not by the fact that she had not had sex. A virgin was supposed to be something akin to a Nurse/Nun. (or something like that)
  • It was the apostle Paul’s privilege to write more books, or letters, of the Christian Greek Scriptures than anyone else. He was given supernatural visions (2Co 12:1-5) and, by means of the holy spirit, was enabled to speak numerous foreign tongues.—1Co 14:18. In his youth at Jerusalem, he received instruction from the learned Pharisee Gamaliel, suggesting that Paul was from a prominent family. (Ac 22:3; 5:34 Paul was versed at least in Greek and Hebrew. What are some qualities of Paul that he clearly demonstrated? In view of his faithfulness in copying Christ’s example, the apostle Paul could say: “Become imitators of me.” (1Co 4:16; 11:1; Php 3:17) Paul was alert to follow the leading of God’s spirit. (Ac 13:2-5; 16:9, 10) He was no peddler of God’s Word, but spoke out of sincerity. (2Co 2:17) Though educated, Paul did not try to impress others with his speech (1Co 2:1-5) nor did he seek to please men. (Ga 1:10) He did not insist on doing what he had the right to do, but adapted himself to the people to whom he preached, exercising care so as not to stumble others.—1Co 9:19-26; 2Co 6:3. What, then, was the purpose of Paul’s apostleship? Jesus himself stated that it was for a particular purpose—not as a replacement for Judas—but that Paul might serve as an ‘apostle [sent one] to the nations’ (Ac 9:4-6, 15),
  • Peter referred to Paul's letters as "Scripture."
  • Actually, Paul DID meet Jesus. Read Acts chapter 9. This experience of meeting Jesus on the road to Damascus was so profound, that Paul went from killing Christians to being one himself. Paul's letters to the churches he had started (mostly Gentiles) were his ministry, and it was Paul more than anyone else who brought Christianity to the Gentiles. And yes, it was to these people he tended to be more critical. But then, it was Paul who was more open to meeting non-Christians where they were in their own faith. He didn't blast others for believing in their "unknown god" but gently used this as a starting point for telling them about Jesus (Acts 17:22-31). And it was Paul who was more open than anyone to Gentiles being Christians as they were (and not having to become Jews first).
  • I also like to think about Paul this way: He was a persecuter of Jesus followers, agreed with the stoning of Stephen and as bad as he was He Turned Around!!!!!!!But he also had Jesus ask him "Saul, Paul, Why are you persecuting me?"
  • They don't place emphasis on Paul and his letters. The fact that these constitute such a large part of the new testament guarantees that a large part of what is used from the new testament comes from them, thus giving the appearance of unusual emphasis where there is none. . And we have it in the Bible that he met him on the road to Damascus.
  • Many of Paul's letters appear to contradict other bible passages. The reason for this is the time they were written. - Jesus gave the disciples authority to bind and loosen the Law (see Matt 18:18) - The disciples are shown to have done this at Acts 15:19-20 If you will read this passage you will see that all but 4 things`were loosened (not abolished permenantly) - In the next verse we additionally see that the OT Law continued to be read publicly (Acts 15:21) Note the actual Law and scrolls`of the prophets were read (not sermons like exist today. - The only four things`left bound from the Law were; 1)abstain from things polluted by idols 2)abstain from fornication 3)abstain from things strangled 4) abstain from blood - It becomes obvious that this is the time period Paul wrote many of his letters (while most of the Law was in the "loosened" state) - However as can be seen, the OT Laws were gradually re-introduced. Compare 2Cor`13:1-2 with Numbers 35:30 Here you see a`Law governing how judgment was to occur. Two or more witnesses were needed. And if you notice the passage in 2Cor 13:1-2 contains quotation marks indicating it was not merely a new law but an existing one first found at Numbers 35:30 - Notice also that this is not one of the 10 commandments, but is instead one of the other 600+ (lesser) Laws. This is just one small example`that establishes the OT Law was NOT aboished as most churches teach. At 1Cor 4:21 Paul writes; "What do you perfer? Shall I come to you with a rod or with love and a gentle spirit?" Now here's a question to ponder, if the Law was`abolished then how did Paul have authority to be threatening the congregation with a`"rod"? If the Law was abolished he wouldn't have. The presence`of these verses show us that the Law was actually never abolished but was instead only "loosened" for a short period of time. - James is recorded as writing; "become doers of the word and not hearers only" (James 1:22) Now realize what that would have ebtailed if the full Law was still being read! Why it would mean that all the Laws and commandments from OT were again to be followed and obeyed.- But to answer this question, the reason why (some) of Paul's letters seem contradictory, is because they were penned`at a time when most of the Law had been (temporiarly) "loosened"
  • Because most of the New testament is written by Paul or his followers. Most of the Gospels were written after Acts.
  • Paul managed a hostile takeover of Christianity. Technically, it should be called: Paul-anity.
  • The main problem here is today vs then. Most theologens put todays spin on yesterdays society. they continually take things form context, misinterpret words from the Greek to change the meanings of the verse and do not deal with whom Paul was talking to, the reason Paul said what he said to those people or where the people were living at the time it was written. 1 Corinthians being probably the best prime example I know of! Paul has got to be the most misunderstood man in the entire Bible because his letters have been twisted to the point he would not recognize them today. We have preachers to thank for this because so many people are illiterate when it comes to the Bible and believe what the preacher says as truth and do not examine for themselves!
  • You can believe what you want to believe. You will be rewarded accordingly for what you choose to believe. As will I, and everyone else. Keep in mind though, Christ's words. "Now this is the basis for judgment, that the light has come into the world but men have loved the darkness rather than the light, for their works were wicked. For he that practices vile things hates the light and does not come to the light, in order that his works may not be reproved."John 3:19-20
  • +3 Very good question. In fact why are any persons letters considered to be 'testament' material anyway, let alone somebody that never met Jesus and seems to know very lttle about either him or his teachings. . I think it boils down to the fact that Judaism had this incredibly rich literary tradition spanning over a thousand years and Christianity at the time of Paul didn't have any scripture at all - none of the gospels were written at this stage. They had to use something and Pauls letters were the only thing they had. . In fact Pauls apostleship itself makes no logical sense whatsoever. A guy that was supposedly alive and living in Jerusalem at the time of Jesus' ministry, who is supposedly to become one of the major figures of Christianity, and Jesus doesn't make him a disciple or even mention him. Instead he waits until shortly after he has been crucified and has ascended and appears to him as a light in the sky .. the only time that he ever makes this kind of appearance in the history of creation. There's absolutly no logic to it whatsoever.
  • "Paul's influence on Christian thinking arguably has been more significant than any other New Testament author. Christianity is commonly said to owe as much to Paul as to Jesus. Paul declared that faith in Christ made the Torah unnecessary for salvation, exalted the Christian church as the body of Christ, and depicted the world outside the Church as under judgment. - Split with Judaism [See also: List of events in early Christianity] Before Paul, Christianity was essentially a Jewish sect, so-called Jewish Christianity, and Gentiles that wished to join the movement were expected to convert to Judaism, submit to circumcision, follow the dietary restrictions of kashrut, and more. Paul insisted that faith in Christ was sufficient for salvation and that the Torah did not bind Gentile Christians. The success of Paul's efforts sped up the split between Christianity and mainstream Judaism, even though Paul wanted no such split himself. Without Paul's success against the legalists who opposed him, Christianity would never have been more than a dissenting sect within Judaism." "In his commentary The Epistle to the Romans (Ger. Der Römerbrief; particularly in the thoroughly re-written second edition of 1922) Karl Barth argued that the God who is revealed in the cross of Jesus challenges and overthrows any attempt to ally God with human cultures, achievements, or possessions." Source and further information:
  • Paul had a better campaign manager
  • +5. Wow, I just read Iwnit's answer and it was so great all I can say is see his answer, it was fantastic and I agree with it

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