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Paul’s Theological Arguments

from Google Images

from Google Images

Up until this point in his epistle, Paul was trying to reestablish his credibility with the Galatians which had been damaged by the agitators from Jerusalem. They claimed Paul owed his knowledge of the Gospel to the Apostles and had no authority to preach anything except what they were teaching at Jerusalem. Nevertheless, Paul began by logically showing the Galatians that he couldn’t owe anything to the Apostles, since he had been evangelizing areas around Damascus for three years before he had even met Peter. Furthermore, he spent so little time in Jerusalem during his first visit there that he couldn’t have obtained much from them in the way of training for evangelism. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 31, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul’s Official Meeting with the Apostles

from Google Images

from Google Images

According to Galatians 2, Paul went up to Jerusalem for a second time fourteen years after his conversion (1:18; 2:1; Acts 22:17). Some scholars wonder if Paul went up to Jerusalem fourteen years after his first visit with Peter, but I am wary of this idea. I base my understanding on the fact that Paul’s argument in Galatians appears to be that he had no time to learn his Gospel from any man, especially from the Apostles at Jerusalem. Paul is giving an account of himself from the very moment of his new birth which occurred on his way to Damascus when Jesus appeared to him for the first time. It was three years after his new birth that he came to Jerusalem, where he spent less than three weeks with the Apostles, and fourteen years after his new birth that he returned to Jerusalem. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 17, 2015 in Epistle to the Galatians, Paul

 

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Paul, the Apostle of God

from Google Images

from Google Images

From the very beginning of his letter to the Galatians Paul identifies himself as an apostle by Jesus Christ and the Father. He words it this way: “an apostle not of man…” presumably because it had been told the Galatians by Jewish visitors that Paul’s apostleship was given him by one or more of the Twelve, and probably Peter figured prominently in their story. The sense is that if he was ordained by men, Paul couldn’t preach anything new. His Gospel must be the very same as the Gospel preached by those at Jerusalem. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on March 1, 2015 in Epistle to Galatia, Paul

 

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Paul’s Post Council Journeys

Below is a chart of Paul’s journeys from the time of the Jerusalem Council and afterward until the close of Luke’s thesis. I have noted every year based upon what seems to be Paul’s overall plan of spending three years doing the work of God in any given area. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 13, 2013 in Gospel, Kingdom of God

 

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Who Received the Apostolic Decrees

Since Luke seems to place great importance upon the Jerusalem Council, it should be asked who received the letter from James, and more importantly, who received the Apostolic Decrees, if James’ four abstentions were required of all gentiles, if fellowship between them and Jewish believers was an issue. This letter from the Jerusalem Council, signed by James and perhaps other elders from the Jerusalem church, is never mentioned again in the New Testament. Is the great controversy upon which Luke places such importance nothing more than a ‘flash in the pan’ so to speak? Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 31, 2012 in Gospel, Jerusalem Council

 

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Dividing Barnabas and Paul

It was only a matter of time before Barnabas and Paul would have split with each heading up his own evangelistic effort, thus training other brethren to labor in the glorious work of Christ, and bringing his Name to places where he was not known. Nevertheless, Luke makes a point of showing that this separation took place earlier than it would have under natural circumstances, and he uses Mark as the impetus in that division. Read the rest of this entry »

 
 

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The Apostolic Decrees

In Acts 15 James pointed out that the Messianic Age had dawned upon mankind, and because it has, the previous age, the Age of the Law, was coming to a close. The gentiles did not have to be circumcised and become Jews in order to seek the Messiah (cp. Amos 9:11-12 in the LXX). The Mosaic Law was no longer the mediator between God and man. Jesus, to whom both the Law and the Prophets pointed, is our only Mediator between God and us. To force circumcision upon the gentiles who are seeking the true God would be to reject Jesus as our Mediator in favor of the Law of Moses. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on December 27, 2012 in circumcision, Jerusalem Council

 

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