The Apostle Paul
Updated: Apr 14
Most church goers today don't hear much about the Apostle Paul. Most preachers only teach Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John out of the new testament. Only occasionally going into Paul's writings, often omitting the parts about Grace. I personally believe that is because he is the ultimate adversary of Satan and his books have the most clear cut path to salvation, which is believing in the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Satan does not want people to get to heaven, and he does anything he can to stand in their way. People think Satan dedicates his time to heavy metal music and hard rock and gory movies, which he does to a degree, but his main focus is the church. Yes Satan wants to destroy the church by twisting the word of God. If you are like me you may have gone into the world seeking the truth of God in order to draw near to him and have a relationship. To learn his commandments and his will for your life. You may have found untruths mixed with truths, that can leave you frustrated. Getting the simple truth even in church is not always easy. This is why I am writing about the Apostle Paul.
The apostle Paul was the first person to ever bring the God of the Jews to the gentiles (non-Jews). Making it possible to save the whole world from hell, through faith in Jesus Christ. He suffered mercilessly delivering this message of salvation, but he wasn't always so on fire for the Lord Jesus Christ. He was however very much against him. He was not always known as Paul either, he was known as Saul of Tarsus. He was a Pharisee of the tribe of Benjamin (Philippians 3:5). A Pharisee is according to the Oxford dictionary: a member of an ancient Jewish sect, distinguished by strict observance of the traditional and written law, and commonly held to have pretensions to superior sanctity. He was what some have called a raging bull against Jesus Christ. Believers in Jesus, believed and lived contrary to the Jewish law which Saul upheld. He had a singular mission of wiping the believers of Christ off the face of the earth. About 2 years after the resurrection of Jesus we are first introduced to Saul in the the Bible, when he orders the murder of an innocent man named Stephen.
57 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,
58 And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul.
59 And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Stephen being a good Christian pled for God to forgive them. Saul not moved by this continued in his ways. He was on his way to Damascus with a band of men, to capture all of the Jewish believers, and have them tried and executed. Jesus had other plans though. On the road to Damascus he struck down Saul with a blinding light and reveled himself to Saul. At this moment Saul became a believer, and realized what he had done. He would go to Damascus and begin to preach Jesus in all the synagogues of the Jews. People were amazed saying: " Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests?" Acts 9:21. Many were afraid of Saul and were unsure about his intentions. It took some time for the Jewish believers to warm up to Saul, but in time they would come to love him. Saul would begin going by his other name Paul, most likely to put his past behind him. God would then task the most Jewish man on the planet with preaching Jesus to non-Jews or Gentiles. A people once referred to as filthy dogs by Jewish Pharisees.
Paul had a monumental task ahead of him. Preaching Jesus all over the known world. Forming churches (gatherings of believers) every where he went and checking up on them to teach them a Godly life. Paul was often captured, put on trial, and beaten, all in the name of spreading the Gospel. In fact he documents some of these things in 2 Corinthians 11
23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.
24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.
25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;
26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;
27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.
Paul spent most of his life in prison. What must of been so awful for him has changed the lives of millions of people. Because we are left with his amazing letters, that he sent to the various churches that he formed. I consider these letters to be the most important part of the Bible, because they so clearly lay out Gods plan of salvation and the Christian life. He answers so many questions people have about salvation, blessings, chastening, and just the way a Christian should go about their life. The books of the Apostle Paul have to be studied like all the books in the Bible. They are that way in order for people to get more into the word and less into the world.
Just like Satan tried to buffet Paul in his life, he also tries to buffet his teachings after his life. That is why most don't know much about the Apostle Paul and his teachings. I encourage you to begin reading the New Testament section dedicated to Paul, the book of Acts-Hebrews. Not just to read but to study. Use online resources like youtube for bible study help. I thank you for reading my Blog and will leave you with the Gospel.
I Corinthians 15
1 Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
2 By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
3 For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4 And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: